What Is Hormone Therapy for Cancer and How Does It Help?

Hormone Replacement Therapy in Evanston, IL

It’s been known for decades that hormone imbalances can impact various systems and functions of the body, producing emotional, physical, and mental symptoms. Hormone replacement therapy, specifically bioidentical hormone replacement therapy, can relieve the stress the body feels from these imbalances.

But hormone therapy can improve more than just how a person physically or mentally feels; it can also provide the body with a healthy foundation for fighting infections and battling conditions such as cancer. At Meliora Integrative Medicine, we offer bioidentical hormone replacement therapy in Evanston, IL, that can help improve the quality of your life in several ways.

What Is Hormone Replacement Therapy?

Hormones are vital for properly regulating different bodily systems. They are produced by the body naturally and flow through a person’s bloodstream. Different hormones control different functions, some of which include regulating:

  • Libido
  • Mood
  • Stress responses
  • Metabolism
  • Energy
  • Immunity
  • Reproduction

Even slight hormonal imbalances can produce substantial effects, especially if specific hormone levels are lower than they should be. This can be particularly noticeable as people age. 

By age 30, hormone levels gradually begin declining. By 50, hormone production decreases by 50%, causing symptoms like low energy, difficulty sleeping, and lower libido, as well as mood changes and weight gain.

What Is Hormone Replacement Therapy For?

By remedying hormone deficiencies, you can improve these affected functions, like energy levels and metabolism, and the body can also benefit from better resistance to a handful of age-related diseases. In fact, hormone therapy can promote heart, breast, bone, brain, and prostate health — and even help provide the body with the foundation it needs to fight cancer.

The Benefits of Hormone Replacement Therapy

From helping the body fight cancer to improving your sleep, the benefits of hormone replacement therapy range far and wide. For example, hormone replacement therapy is a common treatment for easing the symptoms of menopause, including hot flashes, mood swings, and insomnia. 

According to the Harvard School of Public Health, healthy women under the age of 60 who experience these symptoms can reap benefits such as:

  • Improved sleep
  • Controlled blood pressure
  • Thickened uterus lining
  • Improved vaginal health
  • Boosted and regulated mood
  • Reduced bone loss
  • Increased libido
  • Increased energy

But there are many benefits of hormone replacement therapy for men, too. Some of these can include:

  • Stimulated red blood cell production
  • Increased energy
  • Higher libido
  • Increased body and facial hair production
  • Increased bone density
  • Higher energy levels

Correcting hormone imbalances can be done with treatments that use topical creams or oral forms when deemed appropriate. However, for many patients and treatment professionals, the primary treatment method of choice is the pellet method. 

Very tiny pellets containing hormones are inserted just below the skin in the body, releasing a controlled stream of hormones. They eventually dissolve and are absorbed by the body. When this happens, another pellet replaces it.

For cancer, hormone therapy works a bit differently.

Hormone Therapy for Cancer

A different type of hormone therapy can be used to treat some types of prostate and breast cancer. When used as a cancer treatment, hormone therapy can be used in one of two ways: to slow or stop the spread of cancer cells and to ease cancer symptoms.

Stopping or Slowing Cancer Cell Growth

Hormone therapy for cancer is used not to increase the amount of certain hormones in the body but to block their production, lowering their levels. This is because certain types of illnesses — in this case, certain types of cancers — use hormones to grow.

Hormone therapy is a treatment that lowers the amount of hormones that certain cancer cells use as fuel. By decreasing these hormone levels, cancer growth can be slowed or even stopped.

Easing Symptoms of Cancer

This type of hormone therapy can be used for prostate and breast cancer patients to ease some of the symptoms associated with their illness. Many factors determine exactly what hormones are targeted during therapy, including the type of cancer present, the disease’s progression, and the patient’s general health. When used to ease symptoms, hormone therapy can help with:

  • Low libido
  • Urinary incontinence
  • Sleeping problems
  • Migraines 

Cancers that are treated with hormone therapy generally respond well to treatment. This type of hormone therapy for cancer can be used to either block the ability of the body to produce hormones or interfere with the way hormones act in the body.

Using Hormone Therapy for Cancer With Other Treatments

Hormone therapy can be an ideal choice for patients who are not able to have radiation therapy, chemotherapy, or surgery. It’s often used in conjunction with other cancer treatments if they are warranted. The types of additional treatments depend on the type of cancer, how far it has spread, and other factors.

When used with other treatments, hormone therapy can reduce the risk that cancer will come back, destroy cancer cells that have spread to other body areas, and make tumors smaller before radiation therapy or surgery is performed.

Hormone Replacement Therapy in Evanston, IL

Whether you’re looking to treat a specific condition or would simply like to feel better overall, hormone replacement therapy may be the solution you need. With its wide range of benefits and applications, hormone therapy is a versatile option for caring for your body.

At Meliora Integrative Medicine, we are proud to offer hormone replacement therapy in Evanston, IL. Our approach to care places the patient at its center — we can develop a healing-oriented treatment plan personalized to your individual needs and goals. Contact us today to let us know how we can help you and schedule your free consultation.

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