Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT)
Hormonal replacement therapy (HRT) is a treatment given to women to reduce the symptoms of menopause. As a woman gets older, her body will produce less oestrogen, causing her ovaries to stop producing eggs. Her periods will therefore become irregular or stop permanently.
Low levels of oestrogen will cause a number of symptoms such as mood swings, night sweats, hot flushes, and vaginal dryness. Taking HRT can help to reduce the unpleasant symptoms of menopause and help to restore the body’s supply of female hormone levels, allowing your body to function normally again.
euroClinix offers a wide variety of hormonal replacement therapy medications, allowing you to order your HRT treatment safely and securely online. If you have already been prescribed an HRT treatment, you will be able to complete an online consultation with one of our registered doctors. Once you place an order with us, your treatment will be safely sent to you via free overnight delivery.
How does hormonal replacement therapy work?
Leading up to the menopause, a woman gradually starts to produce less oestrogen, resulting in oestrogen blood levels decreasing significantly. This in turn causes a number of unpleasant symptoms to occur, such as mood swings, hot flushes, and vaginal dryness. HRT medications work by supplementing the body with oestrogen to replace the loss of oestrogen and help reduce any symptoms.
It is important to know that HRT cannot be used in place of contraception, if you are still experiencing your menstrual cycle.
What are the types of HRT?
There are three main types of HRT: oestrogen-only, continuous combined HRT and cyclical HRT.
Oestrogen-only HRT is suitable for women who have had a hysterectomy. There is no need for additional progestogen because there is no risk of cancer of the womb. This form of HRT is taken daily.
Continuous combined HRT consists of both oestrogen and progestogen. This HRT is usually recommended for women who have not had a hysterectomy but are post-menopausal (have not had a period for 12 months). As the supplement of oestrogen can potentially cause cancer of the womb, progestogen is needed to protect the lining of the womb. This HRT is taken daily, without a break between packs.
Cyclical HRT is suitable for women who have not had a hysterectomy, still have their periods and are experiencing menopausal symptoms. This HRT can be taken in two ways. For women who have regular periods, oestrogen is taken daily, with a progestogen taken at the end of the cycle for 14 days. For women whose periods are irregular, oestrogen is taken daily and a progestogen is taken for 14 days, every three months.
When should I start HRT?
Hormonal replacement therapy should be started when a woman begins the menopause if it has been deemed necessary by her doctor. Not all women will require hormonal replacement therapy. The average age for a woman to reach her menopause in the UK is 52. However, women can experience the menopause in their 40s and as early as in their 30s.
What are the advantages of HRT?
The main advantage of HRT is that it helps to alleviate any distressing symptoms associated with the menopause, including vaginal dryness or itching, mood swings, hot flushes and night sweats, by supplying the body with hormones.
The declining levels of oestrogen during the menopause can also cause the bones to become thinner and more fragile, increasing the risk of fractures. The supplements of oestrogen from HRT can also help maintain bone strength. HRT can therefore be used as a treatment for the prevention of osteoporosis, for women who have tried other treatments with no success.