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Bioidentical Hormones – Sterling Compounding Pharmacy

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Bioidentical hormones are molecularly identical to the hormones produced by the human body.  Synthetic hormones, on the other hand, contain side chain molecules, which effect the function of the hormone in your body.  Major drug manufacturers alter the structure of hormones in order to patent and mass produce their medications.  Naturally occurring substances within your body can not be patented.  Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) is available only from compounding pharmacies such as Sterling Compounding of Huntsville.

Natural hormones include estrone (E1), estradiol (E2), estriol (E3), progesteronetestosteronedehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), and pregnenolone. Our compounding pharmacy works together with you and your physician(s) to provide individualized BHRT that provides the ideal strength and dosage form to meet your specific needs.  MTM offers BHRT consultations and continually monitors and refines your dosage until together, we find your ideal combination.  BHRT should be initiated under careful consideration after consulting your physician.  Contact us at (256) 518-9530 or email info at healthsterling dot com for more information and physician referrals.

Scroll Down for Frequently Asked Questions:

What are bioidentical hormones?
What exactly is hormone modulation?
What hormones are used in hormone evaluation?
How long before you can see results?
How long do I have to be on these therapies?
What happens if I stop hormone replacement therapy?
At what age should a person start?
What is menopause?
What are the symptoms of menopause?
How do we treat menopause?
What causes the symptoms of menopause?
Will BHRT interfere with my currently prescribed medications?
There’s been a lot of negative press about BHRT.  What do you think?
Are you ever too old to start BHRT?
Where can I find additional information about BHRT?


What are Bioidentical Hormones?

Retail hormones are synthetic pharmaceuticals that usually are more potent than the human hormones. They are also altered molecularly and do not take the same form as hormones that occur naturally within your body. Many people prefer Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) because these hormones are derived from plant source and are modified to the exact human molecule (estrone, estradiol, estriol, progesterone and testosterone). Estrogens that are derived from plant source are called phytoestrogens derived from soy. Progesterone is a phytoestogen derived from yams. Bioidentical hormones are available only at a compounding pharmacy.

What exactly is hormone therapy?

Hormone modulation is the science of optimizing hormones that are no longer being adequately produced by the body.  BHRT modulation may help you regain and maintain normal metabolic and endocrine functions.
What hormones are used in hormone therapy?

When prescribing a BHRT regimen, physicians use combinations of estradiol, estriol, progesterone and testosterone that are identical in structure to naturally-occurirng human hormones.  Synthetic hormones are drugs that mimic but are not structurally identical to human hormones.

How long before you can actually see results?

Generally, you will begin to see results within two to six weeks.  Just like beginning an exercise program, you can expect full results within three to six months after beginning BHRT.  Often the results of proper BHRT are manifested by what you don’t feel, i.e., tired, sick, witchy, etc.

How long do I have to be on hormones?

You should give your program at least four to six months. Most patients will experience benefits before three months and continue to see improvement beyond that point.  As you age and your body changes, hormones that were once available are no longer naturally produced by your endocrine system.  You should remain on BHRT for as long as you feel it helps you optimize your health.

What happens if I stop?

Should you halt BHRT, your body will simply return to the biochemical normal you experienced before taking hormones.

At what age should a person start such a program?

Thirty-five is a good age for the initial baseline evaluation, because that is when deficiencies begin to appear.  Ageing changes your hormone production.  The rate of change varies for each individual, though in genral, our bodies decrease hormone production as we age.  A person does not need to begin hormone modulation therapy, however, until such time as the body begins to lower its hormone production. Thorough blood tests and assessments help us determine exactly where you may be most deficient and how we can best help you.  Continued dosage monitoring ensures that you achieve optimal results.  It’s never too early for any adult to begin a nutraceutical program.  In fact, MTM encourages you to start taking pharmaceutical grade nutritional suppliments today.

What is menopause?

Menopause is the point in a women’s life in which she stops menstruating.  During the transition to menopause, which can take up to 15 years, the amount of estrogen and progesterone secreted by the ovaries decreases. The reproductive hormonal cycle becomes irregular and eventually ovulation and menstruation stops.
What are the symptoms?

Some of the symptoms are:  hot flashes, fatigue, weight gain, loss of libido, perspiration, insomnia, vaginal dryness, bone loss leading to osteoporosis, decreased skin thickness, urinary tract problems, cardiovascular problems and mood swings.1

How do we treat menopause?

Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is an effective way of managing menopause because most of the symptoms are associated with declining levels of hormone production. Estrogen and progesterone hormone replacement stops (in most cases) hot flashes, vaginal and urinary tract dryness, sleeplessness and mood swings.

What Causes Menopause Symptoms?

Losing chemical substances that were once natural and common throughout your body throws your body out of alignment.  Hormonal shifts, imbalances, and fluctuations change the way your daily body function is regulated.  Menopause may cause all the following: weight gain, night sweats, insomnia, thinning, hair brittle nails, hot flashes, mood swings, fatigue, forgetfulness, dryness, loss of libido.

Why the weight gain?

As you age and estrogen levels decrease, your body adapts to hold on to fat cells because they contain an enzyme that creates estrogen. Weight gain also results from high levels of cortisol, a stress-induced hormone.  Cortisol interferes with insulin, a hormone that converts blood sugar to useable energy.  Additionally, when your cortisol levels overshadow your DHEA hormones, you lose energy, your metabolism drops, and you feel fatigued.

Why might you have insomnia?

Sex hormones regulate melatonin, a hormone that controls your circadian rhythms and sleep-wake cycle.  Production of melatonin increases as your sex hormone levels drop, which can throw off your sleep rhythms and increase your risk for depression.

Why do I have hot flashes?

Estrogen also has an impact on your body’s temperature regulation.  A sudden fluctuation can trigger a hot flash.2

Why the moodiness?

The culprit for mood swings is, once again, imbalanced estrogen levels.3  Estrogen receptors inside the brain increase neurotransmitter and synapse connectivity. Estrogen fluctuations can cause neurotransmitters to fire unpredictably, creating seemingly unexplainable mood swings.  Imbalanced hormone levels can become increasingly complex, because sometimes the level of a hormone is not as important as its ratio to the other hormones.  This is why we help you “balance” your hormones, rather than merely increasing them (click herefor additional BHRT information resources).

Will BHRT interfere with my currently prescribed medications?

Generally, no; however, we encourage you to speak with both your physician and our pharmacist about the medications and supplements you currently take.  MTM’s BHRT Management Pharmacist will be able to advise you best on this and will be happy to work with your own doctor should you so desire.


There’s some negative press about BHRT for women. What do you think about that?

Many women over thirty-five years of age may need some form of hormone supplementation.  This applies to women that have reached menopause as well as peri-menopausal women.  We believe it is integral to your continued health and well being of to mitigate the hormone imbalance associated with menopause, either through BHRT or synthetic hormone replacement therapy.  We leave the choice up to each individual patient.  If you would like additional information, or would like to be referred to a physician, contact us.  We are here to help empower you to achieve optimal healthcare and wellness.  Again, synthetic hormones are not identical to those produced by your body.  Bioidentical hormones, on the other hand, are molecularly identical to the hormones produced naturally by the human body.

Are you ever too old to start?

Age is not a barrier.  Many people over 60 years old will ask this question thinking it is too late to begin a program.  The answer is quite the opposite.  The greater your age, the more likely you are to suffer from hormonal deficiencies, therefore the response to hormone modulation and supplementation is excellent and tends to happen faster.  It is important to note that early intervention can reduce rapid advancement of diseases, such as osteoporosis and Alzheimer’s.4

Preventative action is integral to maintaining your health, so check out our Health and Wellness Resources and let MTM help you prepare for a healthier tomorrow.

Where can I find additional resources about BHRT?

Harvard Medical School’s Women’s Health Watch published this comprehensive article titled “What are Bioidentical Hormones.”  It is an excellent resource that we recommend to be read by each person with an interest in BHRT.  To request additional resources, please contact a pharmacist at Sterling Compounding Pharmacy.

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