Like conventional medications, other treatment methods also pose side effects. HRT and BHRT are not exempted from this fact. If you are planning to undergo hormone replacement as your treatment method, you may want check out some of the HRT and BHRT side effects and risks.
BHRT Side Effects
As one undergoes BHRT, the body takes time to adapt to the drugs ingested. This results to hormonal adjustment symptoms that may be experienced as bloating, irregular bleeding, irregular menstrual cycle, breast tenderness and swelling, weight gain, moodiness and sedation. Some BHRT that contains , if taken orally could bring risks of liver damage or blood clotting.
Some studies also assumed that the use of BHRT can damage the natural system of our body, which might also affect the other organs such as the gland.
This is why doctors strongly require several physical examinations in prior to tailoring the perfect approach of treatment with BHRT. Physicians also suggest the regular monitoring of the hormones during the treatment.
HRT Side Effects
Though there are numerous studies that indicate the HRT side effects and risks, many factors are to be considered, and not all risks are applicable to everyone who takes HRTs. Some underlying factors like lifestyle, genes, age and length of treatment, could bring varying results while taking HRT. That’s why initial diagnosis of the patient’s condition is necessary before undergoing HRT. The following are some of the most reported HRT side effects and risks, accompanied with exceptions:
Menopausal women at 50 years and older who use combined HRT (estrogen and progesterone combination) for less than five years have little or no increase of risk to breast cancer. While women who use combined HRT for more than 5 years have higher risk of having breast cancer. On the other hand, studies showed that women who use estrogen alone (single HRT medication) have no increased risks to breast cancer.
According to a study from Women Health Initiative (WHI), women over 60 who use HRT have higher risks to heart problems. Though the possibility of stroke decreases if skin patches are used rather than oral pills. Usually, HRT whether transdermal (via the skin) or oral (taking pills or tablets) are not recommended for women over 60 years of age.
Blood Clots In Veins (Venous Thrombosis)
High risks of blood clotting are highly noticeable to women below 50 to 60 years of age who are taking oral HRTs. The peak of risk arrives at the early first to two years of therapy among women who already have blood clot problems in their genes. Women who have problems with blood coagulation or blood clotting are not advised to take HRT medications. However, some studies suggest that risks of blood clotting are lessened if transdermal route (i.e. skin patch, gels and creams) is preferred rather than oral HRTs.
Endometrial Cancer or Cancer of the Uterus
According to Kaiser Permanente's study the use of single HRT (specifically, estrogen only without progesterone) increases the risk of endometrial cancer or cancer at the lining of the uterus. However, endometrial cancer is not seen in women who use combined HRT (estrogen and progesterone treatment) and to those women whom had hysterectomy or had their uterus removed.
The disease of having interrupting stones in the ducts of the gallbladder that causes to inflammation and infection is called, cholecystitis. Experts say the risk of having cholecystitis is high in women who take oral HRT medications for five years. However, it is said that the risk of having gallstones is decreased if the use of skin patches preferred rather than taking HRT oral pills. A recent study published in National Institutes of Health (NIH) also show that hormone replacement therapy may also be a risk factor for gallstones.