The delicate balance of safety and optimal results
Like with any medical treatment, hormone therapy requires an experienced and knowledgeable provider to ensure not only patient safety but optimal patient results. Unfortunately, there are plenty of clinics out there offering hormone therapy services that have no idea how to safely administer hormones without merging into steroid therapy, which can be dangerous and bring some unpleasant side effects.
But how does hormone replacement therapy (HRT or TRT) differ from steroid therapy exactly, and how do you ensure you’re getting a safe and effective program from your provider? There are a few key differences and considerations.
What is hormone replacement therapy?
Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) – or testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) – is a treatment used to rebalance and replenish levels of estrogen or testosterone in the body to optimize your system. As we age, our natural levels of sex hormones decline, which can lead to some of those classic signs of aging, like hot flashes in women, hair loss in men, or low libido in both sexes.
What HRT aims to do is establish the normal level of hormones your body needs to function optimally, which, in turn, may help manage or avoid symptoms of menopause or aging in general.
How does HRT differ from steroid therapy?
If you’ve paid any attention to sports news in the past couple of decades, you’ve probably heard of a few different scandals in which athletes used testosterone as a steroid to enhance athletic performance and give themselves an unfair advantage in their sport. It’s cases like these that give hormone therapy a bad rap, but there is one key difference between steroid therapy and hormone therapy: precision dosing.
Precision dosing is made up of two key elements to make hormone therapy not only a safe treatment for patients but an effective one, too.
For one, precision dosing is simply the replacement of what’s missing from your body as hormone levels have declined over time. We aren’t pushing the boundaries of what’s normal in your system like steroid therapy would – we are simply rebalancing your system.
The other key element of precision dosing is that the dose is completely unique and personalized to you and your unique needs. Each person will have a different level of “normal” when it comes to hormones, especially sex hormones, so it’s crucial that your provider knows what that level is and administers a dose of hormones to replenish the system to that exact level.
Hormone therapy is not a “one-size-fits-all” type of treatment, and administering the same amount of hormone to every person – as they do in steroid therapy – can be dangerous and ineffective.
How do I ensure my safety when considering hormone therapy?
If you’re considering starting hormone therapy, safety and effectiveness should be top of mind, and there are a few ways you can ensure you’ll have the best experience and results from your hormone treatment, and one of the biggest ways is to ask the right questions when meeting with providers, like:
- How long have they been prescribing hormone replacement therapy? What’s their track record like?
- Do they look at a comprehensive set of lab results when making recommendations to ensure precision dosing?
- Are they customizing treatment to you, your goals, and your needs?
- Do you have a dedicated point of contact to support you through your hormone replacement journey? Who can you call when you have questions or concerns, and how easily accessible are they?
Hormone therapy is a very personal journey and one that requires very specific attention from not only your provider themselves but also their care team that supports you through the process.
Here at 10X Health, we are just as dedicated to our client’s health and results as our clients are, and our team of Patient Advisors is available to answer any and all questions.
Contact us today to get a comprehensive blood test, measure your current hormone levels, and speak with one of our hormone therapy experts to put yourself on the path to 10X health.