Hormone replacement therapy, an estrogen and progesterone treatment, is effective in treating the symptoms of menopause, such as hot flashes, night sweats and vaginal dryness. Taken orally or transdermally (patches, gels, sprays and creams), patients usually begin seeing a decrease in symptoms in four to six weeks.
Although hormone replacement therapy for women can aid tremendously with management of symptoms, your physician will prescribe the smallest dose needed for the shortest duration to avoid any negative side effects. Use has been shown to cause a slight increased risk of cardiac events, as well as breast cancer if taken for longer than five years.
Not all women are candidates to receive hormone replacement therapy, as it is not recommended for those with a history of breast cancer or venous thrombosis due to the presence of estrogen. Fortunately, non-hormonal intervention methods to decrease menopausal symptoms also exist, including:
- Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), which are a class of anti-depressants
- Behavioral modification
- Localized estrogen to treat vaginal dryness
Speak with your physician about how to best manage your symptoms and other small steps you can take to decrease the impact on your life during transition.
For More Information
For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call 847.570.5020.