Hormone Replacement Therapy
MesoHealth in Lansing, MI offers bio-identical hormone replacement for women. By using Pellet Therapy, our patients experience long and lasting relief of hot flashes, night sweats, low libdo (low sex drive) 24/7 for up to 6 months.
Both women and men live in hormone-rich environment from the age of 15-35 years old. The reason for this is quite simple. This is the peak of the child-bearing years. After the child-bearing years (early 40s to 50s), many women that start to experience a symptoms associated with the natural decline of hormones (ie Hot flahses, Night Sweats, Low Sex Drive, etc). There is nothing "natural" about trying to tolerate these intolerable symptoms. The truly natural thing to do is to give the body back what it misses until it's truly ready to be without hormones.
If you take the time to read the summary below, you'll probably understand more about female hormones than many physicians. Having a firm understanding of these hormones will enable you to understand why Pellet Therapy is superior to any other form of hormone replacement therapy. So let's begin....
THE THREE FEMALE HORMONES (THE SEX-HORMONES)
Once a female reaches puberty, her ovaries will wake up at start producing three main hormones: Estradiol, Progesterone, and Testosterone. These are called Sex-Hormones. To appreciate to full benefits of pellet therapy, lets briefly talk about the functions of these hormones.
The main purpose of the three Sex-Hormones is very primitive, dating all the way back to the cave-men (and cave-women) area. The sex-hormones are designed to increase a females chance of successfully getting pregnant and starting a family. Each month, during the child-bearing years, the ovaries will start producing Estradiol. It's purpose is two-fold: Estradiol also causes 1 egg to mature, and it stimulates the inner layer of the uterus to become richly vascularized in hopes that the egg will implant on it. In the middle of the month, the ovaries will switch gears and start producing the next two sex-hormones. Progesterone's role is to stabilize the thickened inner uterine layer so that any implanted egg will have a better chance of remaining implanted on it. The role of Testosterone is very primitive in that it serves to Rev-Up the sex drive (libido) in hopes of successfully getting the 1 mature egg fertilized.
After mother nature says "you should've had all your kids by now" (late 30s to early 40s) she starts to take away the function of your ovaries and therefore your Sex-Hormones. This natural decline of Sex-Hormones and the symptoms associated with it is referred to as PERI-MENOPAUSE.
The fall in Estradiol and Progesterone causes inconsistent thicking and stability of the inner uterine layer, which sometimes results in irregular periods.
The fall in Testosterone frequently leads to a drop in sex-drive (libido)
By the time a female reaches her late 40s to early 50s, the ovaries no longer produce the Sex-Hormones. This lack of Sex-Hormones and the symptoms associated with them are referred to as MENOPAUSE.
The lack of Estradiol for some women can lead to uncontrolled vasomotor symptoms referred to as HOT FLASHES and NIGHT SWEATS. Estradiol deficiency also results in vaginal dryness and subsequently painful intercourse.
The lack of Testosterone can have profound effects also. Not only does the sex drive diminish, but low testosterone levels can result in increase anxiety, poor mental clarity, decreased zest for life, difficulty retaining lean muscle, and lack of energy.
In fact, when I see women for consultation, in many cases, the testosterone deficiency symptoms are the predominant symptoms.
HOW DO IT GET STARTED WITH HORMONE REPLACEMENT THERAPY?
If you are suffering any of the Menopausal symptoms above, chances are, you may greatly benefit from Estradiol and Testosterone Replacement Therapy. The first step in doing this right is to undergo a Consultation so that a complete medical history can be obtained. All consultations for hormone replacement therapy are scheduled with Dr. Garcia. The second step is to get blood work checked to verify low hormone levels. Additional labs are also checked which can have influence as to the dosing of Estradiol and Testosterone Replacement.
WHAT ARE THE OPTIONS FOR TREATMENT?
Estradiol replacement is available in the form of pills, capsules, creams, gels, patches, and subdermal pellet therapy.
Testosterone replacement is available in the form of injections, creams, gels, and subdermal pellet therapy.
Dr. Garcia ONLY offers hormone replacement in the form of Estradiol and Testosterone Pellet Therapy. Why? because no other form of hormone replacement treatments can achieve the same steady blood levels 24 hrs a day, 7 days a week, for 4 to 6 months at a time. PERIOD. In fact, this is the closest form of hormone replacement therapy that mimics how your ovaries produced hormones.
THE PELLET ADVANTAGE
Estradiol and Testosterone pellets are totally bio-identical as well as bio-available, which means that they are identical in structure and in function to the estradiol and testosterone produced by your body.
HOW ARE THE PELLET'S INSERTED?
A small area of skin around the back hip pocket is anesthetized, followed by a tiny painless incision. A small insertion device (called a trochar) is placed through the incision and the pellets, the size of rice grains, are advanced through the trochar. The incision site is then held closed with steri-strips (a special surgical tape) followed by a pressure gauze dressing. Most patients feel that the procedure is virtually painless.
HOW DO YOU KNOW IF I GOT THE RIGHT DOSAGE?
Before the procedure, we determine the ideal estradiol and testosterone dosages for you based on your Age, Symptom Severity, Body Weight, and Lab Values.
After the procedure, we recheck your blood levels in 4 wks to verify that we dosed you properly. We then recheck your blood levels in 4 months to determine when your next pellet insertion should be scheduled.
WHAT ARE THE RESTRICTIONS AFTER THE PROCEDURE?
We recommend that you avoid high-impact activities (ie. running, jogging, step aerobics, etc), lower body weight resistance training (ie. leg squats, leg curls, leg extensions), and hot tubs for one week after the procedure. Then there are no restrictions.
WHEN WILL I START TO NOTICE A DIFFERENCE?
If your pre-treatment symptoms were truly due to low sex-hormone levels, you're going to be a very happy in 2-4 wks. Some individuals notice improvement of menopausal symptoms sooner, and some a little later.
WILL I START HAVING PERIODS AGAIN?
If you still have a uterus, and you require Estradiol for hot flashes, night sweats, or vaginal dryness, then periods may indeed restart. However, this is not because you are ovulating again.
Cyclic progesterone is required is if you still have a uterus. We prescribe progesterone in the form of oral capsules that are taken for 2 weeks of each month. The purpose of this is to stabilize any thickened uterine lining that builds up (under the effects of estradiol). After completeing 2 weeks of progesterone, any built-up uterine lining may sluff off in the form of a mild to moderate period. Sometimes no period occurs.
Some women would prefer not to have their periods restart. There are only two options in this case. Either you do not receive Estradiol pellet(s), or you take progesterone every day to hinder the thickening of the uterine lining.
For several years, I offered my female patients the option to take progesterone every day so that no periods would occur. But I discontinued this options for three reasons:
- Progesterone (= Pro - Gestation) is a hormone that is designed to help a young female get and stay pregnant. So, unless your pregnant, progesterone was never intended to be in high amounts in the body every day of the month. Daily intake of progesterone may lead to gaining Baby Fat. Remember that prior to menopause, progesterone was only produced for two weeks out of every month. By replicating this natural scenario, it's easier to keep unwanted weight off.
- Several of my patients who use to take progesterone everyday, would accidentally miss one or two days and this would naturally stimulate a break-through period. Because these patients were not accustomed to having break-through periods every month, they would worry thinking that something was wrong. By replicating a natural two-week environment of progesterone it allows the uterus to shed any excessive uterine buildup after the progesterone is stopped.
IF I HAD A HYSTERECTOMY, DO I NEED PROGESTERONE?
No, you do not. Without a uterine line to stabilize, there is no need to include progesterone into your hormone regimen.
IF I'M NOT HAVING ANY HOT FLASHES OR NIGHT SWEATS, DO I NEED ESTRADIOL?
No. In fact if all you have are testosterone deficient symptoms (ie low sex drive, poor mental clarity, low energy, inability to retain lean muscle. loss of zest for life), you will like being on testosterone. It is just as important for women as it is for men.
IS THIS COVERED BY INSURANCE?
The consultation visit and blood work are typically covered by most insurances. However, insertion of the Estradiol and Testosterone Pellets is not covered.
READY TO GET STARTED?
Call 517-336-1200 to schedule your consultation visit with Dr. Garcia. We look forward to seeing you in the near future!