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Menopause and HRT

Holistic-online.com

Alternative Medicine for Menopause

Side Effects of HRT and Suggested Solutions

Many women who try hormone replacement therapy discontinue it because they are bothered by side effects such as weight gain, headaches, or fluid retention. In many cases, side effects can be minimized or even eliminated by making adjustments in dosage or method of administration. Listed below are some of the most common some side effects of HRT and suggested solutions for them. This is for information only. Never make any changes in your HRT program without first consulting your doctor.

Problem

Breast swelling and tenderness, heavy menstrual bleeding, menstrual cramps.

Possible Solution

Breast tenderness and heavy menstrual bleeding may be due to too much estrogen. Reduce the dosage of estrogen and possibly increase the dosage of progestogen. Also take 3,000 mg of evening primrose oil and 50 mg of vitamin B6 daily.

Problem

Premenstrual symptoms such as depression and/or irritability during progestogen therapy.

Possible Solution

Depression and symptoms of premenstrual syndrome can be caused by too much progestogen. Reduce the dosage of progestogen or change to natural progesterone tablets, suppositories, or injections. Natural progesterone is less likely to cause mood disorders. Take progesterone less often, every two or three months instead of every month. Take 50 mg of vitamin B6 and 3,000 mg of evening primrose oil daily.

Problem

Inability to tolerate menstrual bleeding.

Possible Solution

Take both estrogen and progestogen continuously, every day.

Problem

Migraine headaches, nausea, and vomiting

Possible Solution

Nausea and headaches can be a sign of too much estrogen. Change to a non-oral form of estrogen such as patches. Begin with low-dose estrogen patches.

Problem

Increased blood pressure, fluid retention, bloating, weight gain, aching legs.

Possible Solution

Fluid retention can be from too much estrogen. Reduce the dosage of estrogen. Or try changing to a non-oral form such as patches. Reduce the dosage of progestogen.

Problem

Depression, irritability, mood changes, loss of sex drive.

Possible Solution

Change to a non-oral form of estrogen such as patches or injections. The addition of testosterone injections may be necessary, often for three to twelve months only. Change to a natural progesterone.

Problem

Development of large varicose veins or worsening of existing varicose veins

Possible Solution

Reduce the dosage of estrogen or change to estrogen patches. Take 500 IU of vitamin E daily.

Problem

Chloasma (dark and/or blotchy brown facial pigmentation).

Possible Solution

Reduce the dosage of estrogen and change to estrogen patches. Avoid exposure to sunlight; wear a hat and sun block when outdoors.

Problem

Estrogen deficiency symptoms while on HRT.

Possible Solution

Have a blood test to check your blood level of estradiol. If it is on the low side, increase the dosage of oral estrogen or add or change to estrogen patches or injections. For vaginal dryness, add estrogen cream.

Problem

You have decided to give up on HRT altogether, due to the side effects.

What Should You Do Now?

Check with your doctor first. You may be losing the significant advantages offered by estrogen replacement therapy. Consume plenty of foods that are high in calcium, vitamin D, and natural plant estrogens. Eat foods that are high on natural plant estrogens such as green beans and soybeans. Check on natural hormone replacement therapy and Alternative Medicine given here.

Next Topic: Administering Natural Hormone Therapy

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