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Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT)

Symptoms of Hormone Imbalance:

  • Hot flushes
  • Night sweats
  • Low mood and/or anxiety
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Weight gain, particularly abdominal area
  • Headaches
  • Vaginal dryness
  • Changes to hair & nails
  • Reduced sex drive
  • Discomfort during intercourse
  • Poor memory and/or concentration

Why are Hormones so Important?

Before prescribing any form of HRT Mr Curtis will run some blood tests to check your current hormone levels and will then sit down and discuss with you the risks and benefits of treatment to decide which type is right for you.  Different forms of HRT include:


  • Tablets to be taken orally
  • Patches which are applied to the skin and changed every few days
  • Gel which is rubbed into the skin
  • An implant which is inserted under the skin and is longer lasting
  • Localised oestrogen in the form of pessaries if your symptoms include vaginal dryness only


There are more than 50 different preparations of HRT and therefore finding the one that suits you and your symptoms best may not happen instantly.  Your dose or even the medication itself may need to be adjusted until your symptoms are under control.

HRT

As you approach the menopause your own hormone levels will gradually start to decline which can result in unwanted and unpleasant side effects.  Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) is designed to replace the hormones which are no longer being produced naturally.

Oestrogen is produced by the ovaries and as well as regulating menstrual cycles, it also plays a part in maintaining bone density, regulating skin temperature and preventing vaginal dryness.


A reduction in your levels of progesterone will probably not cause as many noticeable side effects as a lack of oestrogen.  However, it plays an equally important role in protecting the lining of the womb (endometrium).  Therefore, if you still have your uterus (womb) when you start HRT you will probably be prescribed a combined preparation to reduce the risk of developing cancer of the uterus.

​ Mr Paul Curtis MBChB  FRCOG

​   Consultant Gynaecologist


Which HRT is Right for Me?