BHRT for Andropause: Addressing Hormonal Changes in Aging Men

BHRT for Andropause: Addressing Hormonal Changes in Aging Men | Meliora Integrative Medicine

Hormonal changes aren’t exclusive to women; men experience their own version as they age, often unrecognized and misunderstood. This shift, commonly referred to as andropause, mirrors the female menopause but with symptoms that many dismiss as mere signs of aging. At Meliora Integrative Medicine in Evanston, IL, we recognize the impact of these changes and offer insight into how they affect men’s health. We offer bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT), which can provide relief to men who are suffering from symptoms of andropause.

What Is Andropause?

Andropause refers to a period in a man’s life when hormonal levels, particularly testosterone, start to decline, typically occurring in middle age. Unlike the sudden changes women may face during menopause, the process in men is usually gradual, often making it less noticeable but equally impactful on health and mood. Symptoms can range from physical to psychological and can be different from person to person.

Common Misconceptions About Andropause

Only Older Men Experience Andropause

Contrary to common belief, andropause doesn’t solely affect the elderly. Men can start showing signs as early as their mid-30s, with factors like lifestyle and overall health influencing the onset. This misconception often leads to a delay in seeking help or recognizing the symptoms for what they truly represent.

Andropause Symptoms Are Part of Normal Aging and Can’t Be Treated

Many dismiss the symptoms of andropause as inevitable aspects of aging that must be tolerated. However, symptoms such as fatigue, mood swings, and decreased mental clarity are not just age-related and shouldn’t just be ignored. They are often linked to declining testosterone levels and can be addressed through treatments like bioidentical hormone replacement therapy.

Andropause Only Affects Sexual Function

While it’s true that andropause can, and usually does, impact sexual health, its effects are far-reaching, influencing everything from muscle mass to bone density and even emotional well-being. Reducing it to just sexual dysfunction overlooks the comprehensive impact hormonal changes can have on a man’s overall quality of life.

All Men Go Through Andropause

Not all men will experience andropause in the same way, if at all. Hormonal decline varies greatly among individuals, with some facing significant changes while others notice minimal to no shift.

How Hormones Affect Men’s Health

  • They Can Regulate Mood and Cognitive Function: Hormonal imbalances, especially in testosterone, can lead to mood swings and can affect cognitive abilities such as memory and concentration.
  • They Can Affect Bones and Muscles: Hormones are integral to bone density and muscle strength. Low hormone levels can result in weaker muscles and more fragile bones, making men more susceptible to injuries and conditions like osteoporosis.
  • They Can Impact Sexual Health: Hormones, particularly testosterone, are fundamental to sexual function and libido. Variations in hormone levels can lead to changes in sexual desire and performance.
  • They Can Impact Fat Distribution and Weight Loss Attempts: Men’s hormones influence metabolism and where fat is stored on the body. Imbalances can lead to increased fat around the abdomen and challenges in losing weight, despite efforts in diet and exercise.
  • They Can Impact Skin Health: Beyond their internal effects, hormones can also affect skin elasticity and hydration. Changes in hormone levels can result in drier, less elastic skin, and can contribute to the aging process.

What Is Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy?

Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy involves the use of hormones that behave identically to the hormones that are produced by the male body. This therapy aims to restore hormonal balance, addressing deficiencies or excesses in hormones such as testosterone. BHRT is distinguished by its use of plant-derived rather than animal-derived compounds, offering an alternative to traditional hormone therapy.

How Does BHRT Work for Andropause?

For men undergoing andropause, BHRT provides a method to alleviate symptoms by replacing diminishing hormone levels, often testosterone. The therapy can be customized based on each individual’s unique hormonal needs, assessed through thorough diagnostic testing. By restoring hormonal balance, BHRT can help mitigate the diverse symptoms associated with andropause, from mood fluctuations to physical discomforts.

How Can BHRT Be Administered?

The primary method for BHRT treatment at our clinic involves the use of pellets, which are inserted subcutaneously and release hormones consistently over time. However, we recognize that each patient’s situation is unique; therefore, for special cases, we can offer alternative forms such as topical creams or oral medications. The choice of administration depends on the patient’s health status, preferences, and specific hormonal needs.

What to Expect From the BHRT Process

Hormone Testing

The first step in bioidentical hormone replacement therapy involves comprehensive hormone testing to identify specific imbalances. This testing forms the foundation for a personalized treatment plan, ensuring that therapy addresses your unique hormonal needs. Results from these tests allow us to determine the precise hormone levels required to restore balance and improve your well-being.

Developing Customized Pellets

Based on the outcomes of hormone testing, customized pellets are created as part of the BHRT therapy. These pellets are specifically made to meet the individual hormonal requirements identified in the testing phase. BHRT pellet therapy allows for each patient to receive a unique treatment, directly aligned with their body’s needs.

Inserting the Pellets

The insertion of hormone pellets is a quick and minimally invasive procedure. These pellets are typically placed under the skin in the fatty tissue of the hip or buttocks through a very small incision that does not usually require sutures to close. The area is bandaged, and you are free to return to all of your normal activities. 

Frequency of Treatments for Men

The frequency of bioidentical hormone replacement therapy treatments varies among patients, depending on factors such as the rate of absorption and individual hormonal needs. Generally, men may expect to undergo hormone replacement through pellet insertion every four to six months. Regular follow-up appointments are important to help us monitor hormone levels and adjust treatment as necessary.

Address Your Andropause Symptoms With BHRT in Evanston, IL

Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy offers a solution for men experiencing the effects of hormonal imbalances due to andropause. At Meliora Integrative Medicine in Evanston, IL, we provide a scientific approach to balance your hormones and enhance your quality of life. If you’re interested in exploring how BHRT can benefit you, reach out through our online form or call us at (847) 440-4355.

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