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WOMEN’S HEALTH

Hormone Replacement Therapy

In many areas of women’s health, recommended treatments and medications have changed quickly, sometimes several times in a decade. This back-and-forth change occurs most clearly in women’s hormone replacement therapy (HRT).

HRT is complex. The same medications provided in HRT can also affect heart disease prevention and the occurrence of breast cancer.

As more new information fills up your doctor’s inbox, treatment methods change, too. That means the recommended drugs (or doses and delivery methods) that worked in the 1990s might be old news now. And FDA-approved medicines needed to support current knowledge might not be available today.

That’s where compounding services come in. Compounded HRT can help to:

  • Avoid a bad reaction to a specific form of hormone medication. You might have a reaction to an adhesive on a hormone patch. The pharmacist can avoid adhesives by mixing the medication as a skin cream.

  • Provide a strength or form of a product that isn’t available commercially. For example, a patient’s normal liver function might reduce the strength of pills taken by mouth. A compounded skin cream provides the hormone in full strength but avoids side effects by routing it through the skin, not the blood.

HRT medications are compounded as:

  • Capsules

  • Skin creams

  • Oil drops

  • Wafers that dissolve under the tongue

The advantage of compounded HRT is that it can be customized to deliver just the right dose of medicine for each women’s body and hormone levels.