London: Nine out of ten UK women are unaware of the natural alternatives to conventional Hormone Replacement Therapy currently available on the NHS, according to a survey by www.ElixirNews.com.
The findings are confirmed by Dr John Moran, an expert in the menopause treatment in Londons Wimpole Street said the results revealed that most GPs were adopting a one size fits all approach to the menopause.
Dr Moran said: Most of the women I see come to me because they are not happy with the HRT they have been prescribed. Most of the time it is not the GPs fault, it is simply that they do not have enough time to sit and listen to the patient they may only have five or ten minutes whereas it takes an hour to ask the detailed questions required for proper treatment.
Without listening you cannot possibly understand the patients concerns and anxieties at this stressful time in their life. Some women feel particularly vulnerable as their children may have left home and they might be suffering from empty-nest syndrome and their parents may be unwell. The menopause marks the start of the time when women are at an increased risk of heart attack and osteoporosis. The symptoms of the menopause can also be very distressing. Hot flushes, for example, interrupt sleep, which in turn causes tiredness.
The danger of this one size fits all approach is that some women, particularly those in the peri-menopause may be getting too much oestrogen from conventional HRT which may make some of their symptoms worse, such as fluid retention and headaches, even though the hot flushes may be relieved. The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) recommends the lowest possible doses of the HRT hormones to be taken for the shortest possible time in the light of recent research. Patients may also may be prescribed anti-depressants which is not the best treatment for the menopause which is mainly due to plummeting levels of oestrogen. Its not surprising with all the symptoms of the menopause that a women becomes depressed and this depression is often relieved by the correct dosage of bio-identical oestrogens and natural progesterone and giving the patient time to talk about their concerns.
Recent studies have shown that the longer a women is exposed to oestrogens the higher the risk of developing breast cancer but only by a very small percentage. One of the alternatives to conventional HRT are bio-identical oestrogens which are given in lower doses and tailor made to suit each individual woman and balanced by the correct dose of nature progesterone and supplemented when necessary with testosterone. There are also other plant-based products such as phytooestrogens that are useful in the peri-menopause particularly in women with more frequent hot flushes. Unfortunately these are not available on the NHS.
Dr John Moran, RD, MBBS, DPsSC, DFFP, P.G.Dip Nutr.MED
Holistic Medical Clinic
30A Wimpole Street
London W1G 8YA
T: +44 (0)20 7935 4870
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