Bio-Identical vs. Synthetic
About Dr. Chartrand
Synthetic hormones such as Premarin and Provera
Dr. Chartrand is a family physician practicing in
are similar but not identical to the body's own
McKinney, Texas. He has an interest in alternative
Premarin, are derived from the urine of pregnant
horses. Like all mammals, horses make estrogen.
Horses produce over 35 different estrogen
molecules, but not one of them is the same as
estrone, estradiol, or estriol, the three human
The difference between synthetic hormones and
the human body’s own hormone receptors leads to
increased risks and side effects. The risks
associated with synthetic hormone replacement
(HRT) came to the forefront when The Women's
Health Initiative study of 2002 showed a
significant increase in the risk of heart disease and
cancer with the use of HRT. Moreover, because
synthetic hormones come in prepackaged dosages,
they cannot be individualized to the needs of each
Bio-identical hormones, on the other hand, are
individually compounded at specific doses for
each patient, allowing for a more personalized
hormone treatment. And, because bio-identical
hormones are identical in structure to hormones
already found in the body, the potential risks and
For Men and Women
that men who have low testosterone levels are at
Hormones influence your entire body, from you
Decreased hot flashes and night sweats.
bones to your bladder, from your heart to your
When bio-identical hormones are used at doses
brain. Hormones affect your immune system, your
matching the individual's needs, they are safe.
response to stress, and your metabolism. Even a
Personalized evaluations are completed prior to
single hormone, like the female hormone estradiol,
beginning hormone replacement therapy with Dr.
is known to have over 400 effects in the body.
As we age, our hormone levels decline. Estrogen
falls in women; testosterone decreases in men.
Hormones Right for Me?
Without adequate hormone levels, our organs
cannot function at their best. Declining hormone
What Are Bio-Identical
Prior to stating bio-identical hormone therapy, Dr.
levels are thought to be one of the primary causes
Chartrand will perform a thorough evaluation. He
will discuss any symptoms you are having and
Bio-identical hormones are plant derived proteins
perform a physical exam. Dr. Chartrand will also
.By replacing these natural hormones (ones which
that are chemically altered to become identical in
conduct urinary, blood, and saliva testing to
your body already makes), you can reestablish
structure to the naturally occurring human
evaluate the level and function of your total
health and vitality. Through bio-identical
hormones. Because they are structurally identical
hormone production. Your family history, medical
hormone therapy, hormones are returned to
to our hormones, bio-identical hormones cannot
history, and current symptoms will be evaluated
optimal levels, slowing the aging process and
be patented by pharmaceutical companies like the
along with the findings from diagnostic tests.
improving our general health, wellness, mood,
synthetic hormones Premarin and Provera.
Together, you and Dr. Chartrand will discuss
memory, strength, muscle tone, sexual function,
Because bio-identical hormones are not marketed
options for bio-identical hormones, herbs,
by the pharmaceutical industry, the public has
vitamins, lifestyle, and diet therapy, before
What Are the Side-Effects?
As you begin bio-identical hormone replacement
Bio-identical hormones are safe and effective.
therapy, there is typically a short adjustment
Bio-identical progesterone has been shown to
period as the appropriate dosages are determined.
reduce the risk of breast cancer, while the
While you will most likely begin noticing positive
synthetic hormone progestin increases the risk of
changes immediately, it may take several months
breast cancer. Several studies have also shown that
to fully balance your hormones. There may be
bio-identical testosterone therapy reduces the risk
some mild side effects during this time including
of prostate cancer. Even for those patients with
fluid retention, spotting, or breast tenderness. Men
prostate cancer, studies show that bio-identical
typically have no unwanted side-effects.
hormone therapy does not increase the risk of
Occasionally, men may experience mild acne until
progression. In fact, recent studies have indicated
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