HRT treatments

What to expect when you start HRT Treatments

As awareness of the menopause and symptoms has increased in recent years so has the number of women taking HRT treatments to mitigate their symptoms with the use of Hormone Replacement Therapy treatments.  According to National Institute for Health and Care (NICE) about a million women in the UK use treatment for symptoms of menopause.  The NHS confirm that the data shows that prescriptions of HRT has increased by 35% when comparing 2020/21 data to 2021/22 .    

These treatments can replace the diminishing levels of hormones responsible for the change, the hormones include estrogen, testosterone, progesterone, and DHEA. These hormones, available through Bodyline, provide a targeted action unlike standardised HRT prescriptions which offer the one-size-fits all approach.

What should I expect?

HRT (Hormone Replacement Therapy) can come in the form of creams, gels, lozenges, or capsules. HRT is most used to treat symptoms like hot flashes and night sweats, making menopausal women’s lives miserable, but it can also be used to treat other conditions like low testosterone levels, osteoporosis, endometriosis and more.

With the help of HRT, women suffering from hormone deficiencies through perimenopause and the menopause can be set free from the life altering symptoms! But when you’ve started an HRT treatment designed to target your personal symptoms, what should you expect?

Side Effects

Like many medications, HRT can see side effects in its users, depending on which hormone they are replacing. The side effects generally improve and become less noticeable over time, however if they persist it is important you let your Bodyline Specialist Menopause Nurse know, and your prescription can be altered and titrated to your specific needs.

Here are some of the side effects that you can expect when starting your HRT treatment.

If you are on a progesterone only HRT, you can expect to see:

  • Breast tenderness
  • Spotting
  • Missed periods
  • Any other premenstrual symptoms

For severe breast tenderness, we will advise you to stop taking the medication until these side effects subside, then gradually reintroduce them. 

If you are on a combined progesterone and estrogen HRT you can expect to see:

  • Bloating and fluid retention 
  • Breast tenderness
  • Spotting or an unexpected period
  • All other premenstrual syndrome symptoms

We will advise you to stop taking the medication until these side effects subside, then gradually reintroduce them

If you are taking testosterone HRT, you may see:

  • Acne
  • Greasy skin
  • In rare cases, hair loss

If you experience hair loss, we will advise you to stop taking the medication and inform your doctor. For the other symptoms we suggest you stop taking the medication and wait until symptoms have cleared before gradually restarting the medication.

Similarly, if your programme includes DHEA you may expect:

  • Acne
  • Irritable moods
  • In rare cases, hair loss

Again, if you experience hair loss, we advise you to stop taking the medication and inform your doctor. 

Risks

Although it is rare, using HRT treatments may increase your risk of getting breast cancer. If this is something you are concerned about, it is best to approach your doctor before beginning a medical wellness journey on HRT. 

Will I gain weight on HRT?

Menopause is one of the leading causes of weight gain in older women, coming as a side effect of the reduced estrogen levels. Therefore, HRT can be a way to pre-emptively avoid such weight gain when taken in the perimenopause stage. 

HRT will not cause weight gain, but if you are worried about your weight, you should know that Bodyline offers guaranteed weight loss success with our medical weight loss programmes. Read more here

Related blog posts

Menopausal women are the fastest growing demographic in the UK workforce with a third of the UK’s female population, around 13 million women, currently in the perimenopause or menopause stage of life. Menopausal age women between 45 and 54 make up 11% of the UK working demographic and 23% of all women in employment. Menopause, whilst a natural life transition that half the population will go through, has traditionally been a taboo subject particularly between men and women. A UCL-led study carried out in May 2021 found that 9 out 10 women were never educated about the menopause – it’s therefore no stretch to conclude that men have generally been even less informed on what to expect and how to deal with it, especially in the workplace.
Menopause symptoms can impact a woman’s sense of self, affecting her day-to-day activities, relationships, and home and working life. It can be a challenging time, both for the woman herself and for those close to her. Better education, much needed research, knowledge and understanding of symptoms, and noise in the press are all helping to normalise the subject and stop the stigma, but it can still be a potentially bewildering and embarrassing minefield for men to address. Menopause specialists Bodyline Medical Wellness Clinics have pulled together some tips for men to approach the subject of menopause below that might just come in useful.
Are you experiencing menopausal symptoms and looking for specialized support and treatment options? So many women are the same due to frustrating wait times in getting help through GPs, and feeling as though they are jumping through hoops for a simple HRT prescription.

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