Hormone Replacement Therapy Q & A
by David Ahdoot, MD, FACOG
What Does Hormone Therapy Do?
Essentially, hormone therapy is used to supplement the body’s own natural hormones. As the body ages, the natural stores of hormones start to decline gradually until only a fraction of the hormones that patients made in their youth are being produced. This results in a slow deterioration of the body’s organs, including the skin. Ultimately, this means that as the body ages, it will not only start to function less effectively, but the skin will also display some obvious signs of aging because of the lack of hormones.
What Are Common Signs of Hormone Imbalance?
Some common signs of hormone imbalance include chronic exhaustion, night sweats, high-stress levels, sleeplessness, poor energy levels, weight gain, hair loss, and mood swings. However, the signs of hormone imbalance are not limited to these symptoms. Patients should talk to the doctor about all of the health concerns that they currently have. Many of those health concerns may, in fact, be tied to a hormone imbalance that could be resolved with hormone therapy.
What Are the Cosmetic Benefits of Hormone Therapy?
Hormone therapy can help restore patients experience younger-looking and revitalized skin. Wrinkles can be dramatically reduced, and skin elasticity will be greatly improved. If hormone therapy is started before major skin damage occurs, wrinkling will occur at a much slower pace than it would have otherwise. While it does have some significant cosmetic benefits, hormone therapy is designed to benefit the entire body. It can help patients feel better as they look better.
How Will Patients Know if Hormone Therapy Is Needed?
The doctor can run a series of specific laboratory tests to determine whether hormone replacement is required in each case. These lab panels will show imbalances and will give the doctor the information needed to determine what type of hormone therapy is right for patients. This therapy is customized for each person.