Frequently Asked Questions
Hormone Replacement Therapy in Men
- How do we treat low testosterone levels?
Like all other hormones in the body, there is an acceptable range for testosterone. In order to maintain normal levels, the brain and the testicles work together to keep testosterone regulated. When levels of testosterone are below normal, the brain signals the testicles to make more. When testosterone levels reach a normal level, the brain signals the testicles to make less.
We can replace deficient or suboptimal testerone levels through the use of injectible bioidentical testosterone. We maintain sufficient levels through lab moniotring of total testosterone and free testosterone and the improvement or resolution of symptoms. This method tends to appeal to patient’s that want a more prescise control of their testosterone levels and the ability to stop the injections if needed. The cost of this form of bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) can often be less expensive as medical insurance may cover a portion of the hormones and other medications.
Bioidentical pellets that are inserted under the skin can be used to provide a long lasting and steady level of testosterone in patients with deficient or suboptimal testosterone levels. Use of this method also requires monitoring lab values and assessment of patient symptomology. While most insurers will not cover the therapy in this form, patients will appreciate the care-free nature of this delivery format and the steady testosterone levels. Most patient’s only need pellets placed 2-4 times a year and they don’t need to worry about scheduled injections.
- Is Testerone replacement therapy safe?
In short, yes! Our goal at Optimized Health and Wellness is to manage testosterone levels in the upper quartile of the normal range. This is called optimization. When testosterone therapy is done correctly and managed within the upper range of normal, scientific evidence shows therapy to be safe. In fact, contrary to myth, there is no scientific evidence that testosterone causes prostate cancer or heart disease. Actually, scientific evidence shows that testosterone protects against heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and Alzheimer’s dementia in addition to managing the symptoms of suboptimal and deficient testosterone levels.
As with any medical therapy, there are some patients who are not suitable candidates for testosterone therapy. If you already have prostate cancer, there is a possibility that testosterone replacement therapy may accelerate cancer’s growth and is, therefore, inadvisable in these patients.
- How do I get started?
Optimized Health and Wellness will order the required blood tests, including total testosterone and free testosterone. You will also need a physical exam and consultation at our clinic. You can have your physical exam performed with any outside medical provider of your choice and bring the results to your consultation appointment. We also offer concierge services and we will come to your home or office to complete your physical exam and consultation at your convenience. During your consultation, we will decide, as a team which testosterone delivery method would be most beneficial for you. Now that you are ready to get started, give the office a call or send us an email so we can set your lab work and consultation appointment.
Hormone Replacement Therapy in Women
- What is testosterone and why is it important?
Testosterone is a hormone produced in the body of both men and women. As women age, they experience a rapid decline in hormones such as estradiol, progesterone, growth hormone, testosterone, and DHEA. The Women’s Health Institute at the University of New Jersey suggests that androgens (testosterone) play a significant role in affecting pre-menopausal and post-menopausal symptoms and quality of life. Although women produce a much lower amount of testosterone than men, this decline is noticed throughout the whole body. Research has shown that testosterone is responsible for a women’s sexual desire and responsiveness, mood, sense of well being and mental acuity.
As it does in men, testosterone supports bone density and muscle tissue growth. Increased bone density is critical because of the increased risk of osteoporosis women face as they age. Women produce their testosterone in the ovaries and adrenal glands and typically lose 70 percent of the hormone by the age of 40. This decrease can cause most, if not all the effects listed above. Some other effects of low testosterone in women include increased risk of cardiovascular disease (Med. Suisse Romande 2003 Mar) and increased risk of Alzheimer’s (Cell mol Life Sci. 2005 Feb).
Women can also have an imbalance in estrogen and progesterone as well. The symptoms associated with deficiency include; chronic fatigue, depression, anxiety, vaginal dryness, heavy or irregular periods, osteoporosis, and weight gain and others.
- How to we treat low hormone levels in women?
Our goal at Optimized Health and Wellness is to manage hormone levels in the upper quartile of the normal range. This is called optimization. When hormone therapy is done correctly and managed within the upper range of normal, scientific evidence shows therapy to be safe. Actually, scientific evidence shows that progesterone and estrogen protects against heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and Alzheimer’s dementia in addition to managing the symptoms of suboptimal and deficient progesterone and estrogen levels.
As with any medical therapy, there are some patients who are not suitable candidates for hormone therapy. If you already have breast cancer or have a history of breast cancer, there is a possibility that estrogen replacement therapy may accelerate cancer’s growth and is, therefore, inadvisable in these patients.
- How do I get started?
Optimized Health and Wellness will order the required blood tests. You will also need a physical exam and consultation at our clinic. You can have your physical exam performed with any outside medical provider of your choice and bring the results to your consultation appointment. We also offer conciere services and will come to your home or office to complete your physical exam and consultation at your convieience. During your consultation, we will decide, as a team if BHRT is right for you. Now that you are ready to get started, give the office a call or send us an email so we can set your lab work and consultation appointment.
- What is Obesity?
Obesity used to be understood in fairly simple terms: excess body weight resulting from eating too much and exercising too little, due in large part to a lack of willpower or self-restraint. Fortunately for the millions of American adults who are overweight, obesity is now regarded as a chronic medical disease with serious health implications caused by a complex set of factors.
Recognized since 1985 as a chronic disease, obesity is the second leading cause of preventable death, exceeded only by cigarette smoking. Obesity has been established as a major risk factor for hypertension, cardiovascular disease, diabetes mellitus and 45 other medical problems including some cancers in both men and women. Obesity affects 58 million people across the nation and its prevalence is increasing. Approximately one-third of adults are estimated to be obese.
Obesity results from a complex interaction of genetic, hormonal, physiological, anatomical, psychological, behavioral and environmental factors causing an imbalance between energy intake and energy expenditure. According to the National Institutes of Health, an increase in body weight of 20 percent or more above desirable weight is the point at which excess weight becomes an established health hazard. Lower levels of excess weight can also constitute a health risk, particularly in the presence of other disorders like diabetes, hypertension and heart disease.
- Is Medical weightloss right for me?
If you have struggled with losing weight in the past and are looking to reap the health benefits of losing weight to look and feel your best, Optimized Health & Wellness medical weight-loss program is designed to lead you to your healthy lifestyle goals.
Scientific research shows that many obesity-related conditions (high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, insulin resistance, obstructive sleep apnea) improve with a modest weight loss of 5 to 7 percent. Medical weight loss is an intensive lifestyle program with a focus on nutrition, behavior and exercise modification.