I am delighted to see that the Dr. Phil show is addressing the issue of bioidientical hormone therapy. I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that BHRT saved my life.I am blessed to have a progessive, "thinks out of the box" physician who prescribed progesterone and testosterone cream for me starting in September 2006. I was experiencing severe menopausal symptoms: hot flashes, no libido, extreme fatigue, substantial depression, you name it. I suffered from a variety of health problems, and I weighed over 300 pounds.
Within 2 weeks of starting the hormone therapy, I was off six medications: antihistamine (cured my severe seasonal allergies), acid reflux medication, sleeping medication (I had taken them all), Klonepin for anxiety, blood pressure medication, and most importantly, Ritalin (I am ADD). I began to feel a level of energy I hadn't felt in years. It took longer (several months) to come off a seventh medication, antidepressant, as those meds must be very carefully weaned.
My restless leg syndrome was cured in less than a week, and I no longer suffer from the severe dry eyes that plague many menopausal women. Oh, yes, did I mention I am down over 80 pounds from my high weight? I finally know what it is like to feel like a healthy, peaceful woman.
I take my hormones transdermally (by creams on the skin) as that way they bypass the liver. I now work out 5-6 days weekly at our local gym, which has tremendously benefited the substantial back, hip and pelvis limitations I have because of a car accident in 1992. My pain management physician is thrilled that the testosterone has allowed me to strengthen my back to the point of no longer needing a back brace, and I have been able to discontinue using the cane I relied on for many years.
I was bemused to read an earlier post about women overdramatizing their menopausal symptoms, but of course, everyone has a different perspective. This goes way, way beyond simple discomfort from a transient set of symptoms, this is about overall health and quality of life. My cholesterol has dropped over 65 points since I started the BHRT, and my other blood levels are excellent. I am now at decreased risk for a number of different types of cancers, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and diminished brain function. I am confident that with the help of balanced hormones, I will be able to live the second half of my life with better quality, and more independently.
Although I do not personally deal with fibromyalgia, I have spoken with more than one person who has told me their symptoms were greatly diminished by progesterone cream. I would be more than happy to correspond with anyone who would like to learn more about BHRT. I have a blog dedicated to bioidentical hormone replacement therapy, as well as a group on one of the social networking sites that I hope people will use as resources to educate themselves. I am also happy to hear from other women (and men, I was so glad to see an earlier post about andropause, which is a significant health issue for men) who have successfully used BHRT. I am quite passionate about the issue, as you can imagine. I use the name Holyhormones because everyone in NC (where I currently reside) is evangelical about something, with me it's just hormones instead of religion!
However, because I am somewhat new to using this site, I do not know if it is allowed to give my email address (which I did over on the Oprah Winfrey site----it's the one I use for my blog) or if I am allowed to give the blog address. I would appreciate it if one of the show's staff who monitors the message boards could clarify that issue for us (I tried to read the terms of service, but they are complicated and incomprehensible), as I know after Oprah did her two shows on bioidentical hormones, the message boards went NUTS and women were desperate to communicate with each other. I hope that this show generates similar reactions and excitement from people who want to learn more and feel better! We exchanged information about doctor referrals, resources to learn more, book lists, success and frustration stories, and answered questions. I have made a number of new friends through BHRT and am proud to be able to help women educate themselves (and in many cases, their doctors!) For now, until we get a clarification, I think you can add me to a "friends" list and I will try to communicate with you that way. Best wishes to all for happy, balanced hormones, there is hope out there for a better life!