Are you on HRT or BHRT? Consider Taking a DUTCH Test
It’s not uncommon for women either in perimenopause (the years leading up to menopause) or those in full-blown menopause to feel they need some help in the management of some of their symptoms. Two popular treatments — HRT (hormone replacement therapy) and BHRT (bioidentical hormone replacement therapy), can help women manage symptoms such as vaginal dryness, hot flashes, sleep issues, and loss of interest in physical intimacy. Without the support of these types of treatments, many women will experience menopause-related symptoms significant enough to negatively affect their ability to fulfil their responsibilities at work and at home.
Trying to endure significant physical changes without any treatment can also cause pain and difficulty in marital intimacy, at a time when women are looking forward to finally having a little relief from their childbearing years which is often filled with worries about pregnancy, sleep deprivation, stress, etc. Given the many years that women experience radical changes in their body during their (pre)menopausal years, it’s no wonder that women turn to their physician for answers.
Hormone Replacement Therapy – A Measured Approach
Just as with any other medication, women who decide to use either HRT or BHRT can experience side effects such as weight gain, bloating, acne, and increased facial hair. Along with side effects, the use of BHRT or HRT may increase a woman’s risk of serious health issues such as blood clots, stroke, heart attack, or breast cancer. Of course, every woman’s symptoms, her personal situation, and her overall general health is unique. Every woman considering whether hormone replacement therapy is right for her should consult with their physician to determine whether the benefits of a hormone replacement regimen outweigh the potential risks.
In general, a woman who has already experienced health issues such as a stroke or heart attack, breast cancer, or blood clots, or a woman who has an extensive family history with any of these medical issues should proceed with caution before engaging in any hormone replacement therapy treatment plan.
The DUTCH Test
One of the ways in which physicians can monitor the effects of either HRT or BHRT treatments on the health of their patients is through the DUTCH test. DUTCH is an acronym for “Dried Urine Test for Comprehensive Hormones”. The DUTCH test is specially designed to monitor sex hormones, adrenal, and metabolite levels of patients who are taking some type of hormone replacement therapy. Specifically, women who either have a personal or family history of breast cancer, or for those simply concerned about increasing their risk of breast cancer if they decide to pursue hormone replacement therapy treatment may want to consider taking a DUTCH test The DUTCH test can help reveal any anomalies of oestrogen metabolism that may surface during treatment. With this information, physicians can adjust their patient’s (B)HRT treatment in order to avoid increasing their risk of breast cancer.
How is the Test Performed?
One of the great things about the DUTCH test is that it can be performed discretely at home. Women simply need to capture 4 or 5 (dried) urine samples in a 24-hour period and ship them to the testing company for evaluation. The test is performed at home at the convenience of the patient, and delivery of the specimens to the testing company is available worldwide.
If you are currently on some type of hormone replacement therapy or are considering treatment and would like to maximize the ability of HRT to precisely fit with your specific metabolism, you can order a DUTCH Complete Hormone (HOR30) test here
If you would like more information in general about BHRT or other lab testing available, please contact us.