Bioidentical vs. Synthetic Hormone Therapy

There are multiple options for hormone therapy available to you. One of the most popular options is synthetic hormone therapy that uses artificially created hormones to attempt to re-balance natural levels of hormones. This treatment attempts to use the same hormone structure for all patients, when in reality, each person’s hormones are unique.

Bio-identical hormone therapy is a better alternative because it decreases the chance that your body will reject the foreign makeup of these hormones.

Hormone therapy has been a hot topic over the last few years, with claims of its efficacy being argued by endocrinologists across the world.

Proponents of the therapy have provided evidence that it can provide multiple benefits, as long as the patient is monitored closely and presents a need for therapy. Most common side effects have only been shown to affect those who received more than they needed or did not need it in the first place.

That being said, there are two main types of hormone therapies offered by doctors, synthetic and bioidentical hormone treatments. What’s the difference?

Synthetic HormonesSynthetic hormones are mass produced versions of testosterone, progesterone, and more.

Each person receives the same type of the hormone they need, and the only difference from person to person is the dosage prescribed by your doctor.

Additionally, synthetic hormones are not created structurally the same as human endogenous hormones, which often leads to uncomfortable side effects. While synthetic hormones can mimic the effects of endogenous hormones on certain biological pathways, they rarely offer the same effectiveness at a deeper, molecular level.

Synthetic hormones are the most widely used form of therapy to date, despite questions of its safety. The danger in these types of hormone therapies occurs because each person’s hormones are slightly different than others, and by introducing these foreign hormones, the body’s immune system recognizes them as such and treats it as an infection.

The most common side effects of synthetic hormones include:

  • Blood clots
  • High blood pressure
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Cancer

If your doctor recommends that you take this treatment, than discuss with him the concerns with this type of treatment and ask about biosynthetic hormone treatments.

Bioidentical Hormone Therapy

Bioidentical hormones mimic the structure and affinity of normal human endogenous hormones; therefore they are effective on more biological pathways, at all levels. Because bioidentical hormones are an exact structural replica of endogenous hormones, side effects are rarely observed, and in the event you do experience side effects, talk with your doctor—the dosage may simply need to be adjusted.

The added benefit of bioidentical hormones is that each dose is tailored specifically for your needs, your treatment is not modeled after a general hormone, rather, they are designed especially for you.

Bioidentical hormone therapies are a much safer option, and they give you added assurance that your treatment is right for you, and not merely a prescribed-to-the-masses, generalized pharmaceutical company package. If you are found to have a need, doctors will guide you step by step through treatment and allow you to experience the benefits of hormone therapies.

The most common noted improvements during treatment include:

 

  • Increased bone density and strength
  • Increased energy
  • Improved metabolism
  • Improved sleeping patterns
  • Increased sex drive and ability

If you are experiencing problems in the bedroom or are just feeling the effects of old age, then bioidentical hormone therapy may be right for you. Talk to your doctor about your medical history and any problems you may be experiencing. After this, your doctor will most likely test your hormone levels and determine if you present a need for this therapy and that hormones are indeed the culprit behind the problems you are experiencing.