Hormones have such powerful effects on your body that any imbalance can cause considerable problems. Keviene Rutherford, MD, at Rutherford Medical Center in Alpharetta, Georgia, can correct symptoms of an imbalance using hormone replacement therapy (HRT). HRT relieves troublesome hormone-related symptoms like hot flashes in women and male erectile dysfunction (ED). Call Rutherford Medical Center or schedule a consultation online today to discover how HRT can help you.

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What is hormone replacement therapy (HRT)?

HRT supplements your hormone levels when they’re too low.

Your body uses hormones for many purposes, including digestion, reproduction, metabolism, and organ function. These substances come from glands around your body that all produce specific hormones.

If a gland doesn’t work correctly, you might not have enough of the hormones it produces for your body to function correctly. Diabetes, for instance, results from a lack of the hormone insulin that regulates the sugar levels in your blood.

HRT replaces the lost hormones to restore proper organ function.

Why might I need hormone replacement therapy?

Treatments for conditions like diabetes and hypothyroidism (low levels of thyroid hormone) involve replacing the lost hormones. However, HRT usually refers to treating women having difficulty with menopause.

Menopause is the stage of your life when your ovaries stop releasing eggs for fertilization, so you can no longer become pregnant. Around age 50, your periods stop for good. Before this happens, you go through perimenopause, when the levels of female sex hormones (estrogen and progesterone) start to fall.

During perimenopause, many women develop bothersome and sometimes distressing symptoms that diminish their quality of life. These symptoms include:

  • Hot flashes
  • Night sweats
  • Thinning hair
  • Dry, thinning skin
  • Loss of libido (sex drive)
  • Vaginal dryness
  • Depression
  • Mood swings
  • Weight changes
  • Trouble sleeping

Supplementing estrogen and/or progesterone hormones can reduce and sometimes relieve these symptoms. It also helps prevent bone density loss (osteoporosis), which can happen after menopause.

Men don’t undergo the same changes, but midlife can affect their testosterone (male sex hormone) levels. A lack of testosterone can result in a loss of muscle mass, lack of drive, reduced libido, and issues like erectile dysfunction (ED).

This problem is sometimes referred to as andropause (male menopause) and can be treated with HRT.

What does taking hormone replacement therapy involve?

The first step is a consultation at Rutherford Medical Center. Your doctor completes a detailed medical exam and reviews your health history. It’s also essential that they know about anything that can make HRT unsuitable, like a history of deep vein thrombosis (DVT) or breast cancer.

If HRT is a suitable treatment for you, you can take it in several ways. You can swallow a pill daily, apply a patch to your skin, or have periodic injections. One popular method involves a tiny implant under your skin.

Call Rutherford Medical Center or book an appointment online today to learn more about HRT and how it can boost your health and well-being.