A Closer Look at Hormones
Hormone production is a natural chemical response that occurs in almost every process of the human body. The hormones produced and secreted via various glands situated throughout the body are part of the endocrine system. This network is a vital yet complex feedback loop of chemicals between the body and the brain that regulates many functions. These chemicals have a number of key responsibilities, including metabolic function, growth, mood, and sex drive. It is little wonder, then, that the development of bioidentical hormones has been a significant advance in the field of hormone replacement therapy, and has made a positive change in countless lives worldwide.
The Endocrine Society defines bioidentical hormones as “compounds that have exactly the same chemical and molecular structure as hormones that are produced in the human body”(1) Bioidentical hormones are produced as analogous counterparts to the hormones that are already naturally present in your body. They are used to replenish lower levels of hormones that can affect the body and mind as a direct result of the aging process.
Women face a number of challenging experiences throughout their lives, but menopause is perhaps the most daunting. Menopause is experienced by 1.5 million women each year.(2) It is considered to be the final stage in a woman’s ovulation cycle, where menstruation eventually ceases permanently. Perimenopause is the period of time shortly before menopause begins. Women can experience a roller-coaster of unfamiliar hormonal fluctuations when they enter perimenopause and menopause which can have an adverse effect on their quality of life and their ability to get on with their lives. These monumental modifications inside the body can lead to a number of symptoms, including:
- Hot flashes
- Mood swings
- Vaginal dryness
- Changes in sexual arousal
- Night sweats and sleep disturbance
Thankfully, there are now many ways to mitigate this exasperating experience. One of which is Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT). Christopher Asandra, MD is a leading national figure in hormone replacement therapy. AsandraMD Beverly Hills offers pioneering treatment programs for women that significantly improve patient wellbeing and dramatically reduce perimenopausal and menopausal symptoms. Don’t put off lasting comfort and dignity any longer. Call his helpful and knowledgeable staff now at (424) 213-1118 to hear about how hormone replacement therapy could enhance your quality of life significantly.
Bioidentical Hormone Production
In the simplest of terms, bioidentical hormones are extracted from existing compounds found naturally in plants. These are then modified to be indistinguishable from naturally occurring hormones found in the human body.(3) Virtually identical on a molecular level, there is clear empirical evidence that these natural compounds are effective in the treatment of menopausal mood symptoms.(4) The most commonly used bioidentical hormones for both women and men are:
- Estrogen is known as the principal female sex hormone. It also contributes significantly to bone health, cognitive health, and cardiovascular function. BHRT with estrogen can benefit patients by restoring their natural balance of hormones, which can result in weight loss and improved menopause symptoms.
- The secondary female hormone progesterone plays a key regulatory role in female ovulation, and its depletion can cause issues once ovulation has begun to halt, or has stopped entirely. Progesterone replacement combined with estrogen has been proven to reduce the chances of developing estrogen-induced hypoplasia (unusually thick uterus lining)
- Testosterone has a role in the functions and processes of all genders, and is classified as an androgen. Androgens regulate the male characteristics of both men and women. They play an important role in libido regulation, muscle mass, and red blood cell production.
Surprisingly, the organisms from which most bioidentical hormones are extracted can be found in your pantry or garden. They are produced in laboratories from wild yams, cactus and soy. In fact, wild yams have been used as a natural remedy to reduce the pain of menstrual cramping since the 18th century! (4) Compounds called phytoestrogens are extracted from organic materials harvested from plants. Phytoestrogens are estrogen-like compounds that are similar in structure to estradiol, an important form of estrogen produced naturally in the ovaries. There is strong evidence that these compounds can significantly suppress the clinical symptoms of menopause.(5)
Stay up-to-date with the latest therapeutic hormone replacement treatments by visiting our blog, or complete an online inquiry form so we can address your individual needs in a timely, professional way.
Benefits of Hormone Replacement Therapy in Beverly Hills
Nobody likes feeling moody, depressed, or anxious. It may seem as though something has been irritating you all day, but can’t put your finger on what, or you may find yourself irrationally snapping over something as trivial as forgetting to turn off the bathroom light. Dysregulation of mood is a well-known side-effect of aging. Bioidentical hormone replacement treatments can provide you relief from the ups and downs of age-related mood change. In addition, patients undergoing BHRT may find they have:
- An increase in energy and stamina
- Increased libido
- Relief from hot flashes
- An increase in bone density
- More restful sleep
- Increased mental clarity
Compounded medications containing hormones have been scientifically proven to alleviate these, and other troublesome symptoms of menopause.(6)
What are Compounded Medications?
Compound medications are a mixture of various beneficial ingredients to create an optimal medication tailored to your specific individual needs. They are created under the supervision of your doctor and provided by your pharmacist. Bioidentical hormone treatments can be found in many forms, including:
Call renowned Beverly Hills medical professional Christopher Asandra, MD at (424) 213-1118 to discover your personalized hormone replacement treatment, and experience a reinvigorated outlook on your life. Alternatively, visit our website for a catalog of our beneficial anti-aging services.
Candidates for BHRT
It is important to discuss your lifestyle with Dr. Asandra in a personal consultation so that he can tailor hormone replacement solutions that are unique to you. However, most candidates for BHRT are experiencing age-related symptoms related to hormone depletion. These can be expressed in various different ways depending on your age, sex, and overall physical health.
- Increased anxiety and/or depression
- Hot flashes
- A deterioration in hair and skin quality
- A loss of bone density
- Sexual health issues such as low libido and vaginal dryness
- Night sweats
- Brain fog
In men, lower testosterone levels may cause:
- Sexual health issues such as erectile dysfunction and low libido
- Decreased focus
- Weight gain
- Anxiety and/or depression
- Thinning hair and dryer skin
- Mood swings
Christopher Asandra, MD is a prominent figure in the anti-aging field. At his Beverly Hills practice, he works diligently to ensure that our patients look and feel their best, and shares in their happiness when they find a treatment that improves their wellbeing and enables them to get on with their lives. At your personal consultation, you will discuss your general health, and address age-specific issues that have led you to seek BHRT treatment. He will then set out a long-term treatment plan that is tailored to your particular personal needs. We want you to feel secure in the knowledge that you are in the safe hands of a consummate professional throughout the entire process.
Listen to Dr. Asandra’s latest podcast for a deeper understanding of revitalizing anti-aging therapies, and learn how individualized treatment plans help our patients on their road to rejuvenation.
Lasting Effects of Bioidentical Hormone Therapy
Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy is an effective and safe treatment for perimenopausal and postmenopausal women. This is especially apparent in populations with higher perceived stress and a history of stressful life events before or during menopause.(7) It is also a robust and effective treatment for men with an array of age-related hormonal problems.(8) The long-term effects of BHRT can include:
- Increased sex drive
- Decreased anxiety and/or depression
- Clearer, more focused mind
- Healthier skin and hair
- Increased vigor and energy
- Better sleep quality
- Increased sense of well-being
As we age, we may notice that the negative effects of growing older cause us significant discomfort, but we should not suffer in silence. To read the testimonials of our satisfied patients after their personalized hormone replacement treatment, please visit our website.
Cost of Bioidentical Hormone Therapy
Our bodies are all unique. There are therefore many variations one can make to a hormone replacement regimen to ensure its effectiveness. As a result, the cost of your bioidentical hormone replacement therapy will vary according to your specific circumstances. To inquire about the budget you need for BHRT, fill out an inquiry form and our knowledgeable staff will endeavor to answer all of your financial questions.
Is BHRT suitable for everybody?
Bioidentical hormone therapy is effective for many patients experiencing the adverse symptoms of age-related hormone depletion. It is strongly advisable to bring your questions and concerns to a licensed medical practitioner who will be able to provide clear guidance on the effectiveness of hormone replacement therapy in your individual circumstances.
What are the negative side-effects of BHRT?
Some people experience unwanted side-effects from BHRT which include weight increase, spotting, acne, and headaches, however, these symptoms usually dissipate once the body adjusts to the newly introduced hormones.
Can men get hormone replacement therapy?
Yes! Testosterone replacement therapy is a common treatment for men who are experiencing age-related problems affecting sex drive, erectile dysfunction, and weight gain, and a number of other effects that may be relieved with hormone replacement treatments.
How will BHRT replacement therapy change my body?
BHRT replenishes hormones produced by the body through natural processes. Patients who undergo BHRT may experience a number of beneficial results including increased libido, reduced feelings of depression and/or anxiety, a reduction in mood swings, and an overall increase in wellbeing.
Are there any additional supplements I should take while undergoing BHRT?
You may find taking a number of vitamin supplements beneficial during your bioidentical hormone replacement treatment. Talk to a licensed medical practitioner to get a complete picture of the additional supplements you should take that could increase the effectiveness of your BHRT.
- Bioidentical hormone therapy. Mayo Clinic proceedings, 86(7), 673–680. https://doi.org/10.4065/mcp.2010.0714
- Santoro, N., Epperson, C. N., & Mathews, S. B. (2015). Menopausal Symptoms and Their Management. Endocrinology and metabolism clinics of North America, 44(3), 497–515. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecl.2015.05.001
- Fishman, J. R., Flatt, M. A., & Settersten, R. A., Jr (2015). Bioidentical hormones, menopausal women, and the lure of the “natural” in U.S. anti-aging medicine. Social science & medicine (1982), 132, 79–87. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.socscimed.2015.02.027
- Woods, J. MD (2015). Clarifying The Terms “Bioidentical Hormones” And “Compounded Hormones”. Obstetrics & Gynecology menoPAUSE Blog. https://www.urmc.rochester.edu/ob-gyn/ur-medicine-menopause-and-womens-health/menopause-blog/april-2015/clarifying-terms-bioidentical-hormones-compounded.aspx
- Desmawati, D., & Sulastri, D. (2019). Phytoestrogens and Their Health Effect. Open access Macedonian journal of medical sciences, 7(3), 495–499. https://doi.org/10.3889/oamjms.2019.044
- Ruiz, A.D., Daniels, K.R., Barner, J.C. et al. Effectiveness of Compounded Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy: An Observational Cohort Study. BMC Women’s Health 11, 27 (2011). https://doi.org/10.1186/1472-6874-11-27
- Stephenson, K., Neuenschwander, P. F., & Kurdowska, A. K. (2013). The effects of compounded bioidentical transdermal hormone therapy on hemostatic, inflammatory, immune factors; cardiovascular biomarkers; quality-of-life measures; and health outcomes in perimenopausal and postmenopausal women. International journal of pharmaceutical compounding, 17(1), 74–85. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23627249/
- Brawer M. K. (2004). Testosterone replacement in men with andropause: an overview. Reviews in urology, 6 Suppl 6(Suppl 6), S9–S15. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1472881/