Compounded Bio-Identical Hormones
Sterile Hormone Pellets offer another alternative for bio-identical hormone replacement therapy. A trained physician implants tiny pellets, usually every 3 to 6 months. The sterile hormone pellets supply a steady supply of hormones without the peaks and valleys of other therapy choices. Both men and women can benefit from pellet therapy.
Thanks to advances in pharmaceutical technology and the introduction of the online compounding pharmacy, HRT is now available in many forms. These forms include pills, patches, and even pellets embedded just beneath the surface of the skin. Scientific advances have also allowed pharmaceutical companies to create the hormones used in HRT by extracting them from plants or synthesize them in a lab.
Bio-Identical Hormones & Pellet Therapy
Pavilion Pharmacy has been compounding sterile bio-identical hormone pellets both for estradiol and testosterone for over twenty years. Many leading physicians across the country depend on Pavilion Compounding Pharmacy for quality pellets. Our BHRT pellets are sterilized by a unique method called E-beam irradiation. This methodology provides a product that meets our criteria for safety, efficacy, and patient acceptance. Irradiation is the only USP compliant way to sterilize pellets. See our blog post for more information about our hormone pellets.
Types of Therapy & Doses
There are many types and dosage forms of hormone replacement therapy available for men and women. Hormone replacement can be taken in the form of an injection, patch, pill, sublingual troche, pellet implants or transdermal cream. Each method has its own benefits and risks. If you’re using hormone therapy but are having difficulty with it, talk to your doctor or pharmacist about other methods or dosages. It often takes several months of adjusting to find the optimum hormone combination for each patient.
Click here to read our blog post about micronized progesterone from PCCA.
About Hormones and Hormone Replacement Therapy
Hormones are the body’s “chemical messengers” that tell other body parts how and when to work. Hormones are responsible for controlling nearly all of the body’s functions, from the metabolism of food to sexual desire and function. Hormone levels can change over time, particularly for women who are approaching menopause and for men who are over the age of 40.
One of the most common uses for hormone replacement therapy is to help balance the hormones estrogen and progesterone in women around the time of menopause. During puberty, ovaries in the female body produce estrogen and progesterone. Estrogen is a sex hormone that promotes the development and maintenance of the body’s female characteristics. After puberty, estrogen creates a suitable environment for the fertilization, implantation, and nutrition of an early embryo during pregnancy.
Estrogen is also important for heart health because it raises the levels of HDL (good cholesterol) and decreases the amount of LDL (bad cholesterol) in the blood. The hormone relaxes, smoothes, and dilates blood vessels to increase blood flow. Estrogen also soaks up free radicals, which are naturally occurring particles that can damage arteries and other tissues in the body.
Progesterone helps get the uterus ready for pregnancy. This important hormone also helps regulate the menstrual cycle.
The levels of estrogen and progesterone drop as women reach menopause, which is when the menstrual cycle stops and a woman can no longer bear children. The drop in hormone levels causes menopausal symptoms, which can include:
- Hot flashes
- Vaginal dryness
- Painful intercourse
- Mood swings
- Sleep disorders
- Decreased sexual desire
Drops in estrogen can also lead to a higher risk of heart disease.
Hormone replacement therapy reduces menopausal symptoms, improves sleep, eases vaginal dryness and itching, and makes sex less painful. Doctors typically recommend estrogen-only HRT for women who have undergone a hysterectomy and no longer have a uterus. Prescribers usually recommend a combination of estrogen and progesterin, which is an artificial form of progesterone, for women who still have a uterus.
Men may also benefit from hormone replacement therapy to restore testosterone levels. Testosterone and other male hormones can start to drop after a man reaches the age of 40. Lower hormone levels can affect sexual function, muscle strength, and bone loss. Hormone replacement can help men restore sexual function and muscle strength, and slow down bone loss.
Everyone is an individual and has unique health needs, so doctors tailor hormone replacement therapy for each of the patients for whom they recommend HRT. A wide variety of HRT types and dosages are available for men and for women. Patients can choose from injections, patches, pills, sublingual lozenge, transdermal creams, and pellet implants.
As with all medications, each type of HRT therapy has its own risks and benefits. Hormone replacement therapy may increase the risk of the following:
- Blood clots
- Gallbladder disease
- Heart disease
- Breast cancer
Atrevis™ Hydrogel: The Next-Generation Base for Testosterone Delivery
Pavilion Compounding Pharmacy now proudly offers Atrevis™ Hydrogel by PCCA for our compounded topical Testosterone formulations. Atrevis™ Hydrogel is a topical drug that delivers testosterone through the skin.
A hydrogel is a 3-dimensional (3D) network of polymers, or molecular structures, capable of holding liquids and medications. Human skin absorbs the hydrogel and the medications, where they go to work restoring testosterone levels. Natural enhancers can drive testosterone even deeper into the skin.
Benefits of Atrevis™ Hydrogel:
Atrevis™ Hydrogel offers a number of benefits, including:
- Superior testosterone delivery: Many testosterone HRT drugs use a hydro-alcoholic base to introduce hormones into the skin. Independent testing demonstrates that Atrevis Hydrogel delivers greater amounts of testosterone through the skin than does both a competitor base and a hydro-alcoholic surfactant solution
- Alcohol-free: Atrevis does not contain alcohol, so it does not evaporate as quickly as alcohol-based drugs and it maintains chemical stability without drying out the user’s skin
- Quick absorption: It absorbs quickly when rubbed into the skin, leaving a smooth texture and no greasy residue
- Non-comedogenic: Atrevis does not clog skin pores, so it does not cause breakouts
Bio-identical vs. Synthetic Hormones for Hormone Replacement Therapy
There are two main types of hormones used in hormone replacement therapy: bioidentical hormones and synthetic hormones. While both trigger the same responses as the body’s own hormones, natural and synthetic hormones come from different sources and work in different ways.
Bioidentical hormones are manmade hormones that have a similar chemical structure to those the human body produces naturally. Because they are chemically similar to the hormones produced in the body, bioidentical hormones work like the body’s own hormones and with very few side effects.
Healthcare professionals refer to bioidentical hormones as “natural hormones” because the hormones come from a plant. Wild yam and soybean plants contain special molecules, known as precursor molecules, which scientists can chemically process into progesterone, estradiol, testosterone, and other hormones.
Synthetic hormones for HRT
Scientists create synthetic hormones in a laboratory. Unlike bioidentical hormones, synthetic hormones are not structurally similar to the hormones produced in the human body, and this may lead to uncomfortable side effects. Synthetic hormones come in standardized dosages too, which means doctors cannot customize dosages for each patient.
A number of companies offer brand name synthetic hormones, including Provera (medroxyprogesterone), Halotestin (fluoxymesterone), Estinyl (ethinyl estradiol), Prempro and Estratest. Doctors may recommend synthetic hormones in certain cases, such as when a patient has a personal or family history of estrogen-dependent tumors.
Pharmaceutical Compounding of Bio-identical Hormones
Compounding pharmacies and compounding pharmacists, licensed by state boards to perform compounding, can formulate hormones using chemicals approved by the FDA for use in the United States. Compounding companies can create transdermal creams, sublingual troches, pellet implants, suppositories, delayed-release capsules or tablets and injectables in personalized doses. Compounded bioidentical hormones allow patients to receive the exact amount of hormones they need; commercially made hormones provide a one-size-fits-all solution to hormone replacement.
Compounding pharmacies have been fulfilling patient demand for bioidentical hormones, but many drug manufacturers are starting to offer natural hormones. Today, Androgel, Climara, Estrace, Fempatch, Vivelle, Androderm and Prometrium now offer bioidentical hormones.
Sterile Hormone Pellets for Bio-identical Hormone Replacement Therapy
Many men and women prefer to receive bioidentical HRT through sterile hormone pellets. In a painless outpatient procedure, trained doctors implant these grain-sized pellets just under the skin in the hip area. The pellets release a small, steady amount of hormones directly into the bloodstream, much like the ovaries and testes of a younger adult. Sterile hormone pellets typically last for 3 to 6 months.
Pavilion Pharmacy has been compounding sterile bioidentical hormone pellets, for both estradiol and testosterone, for more than 20 years. Leading physicians from across the country rely on Pavilion Compounding Pharmacy for high-quality HRT pellets.
Pavilion Compounding Pharmacy uses a unique method, known as E-beam sterilization, to sterilize their BHRT pellets. E-beam sterilization, also known as electronic-beam processing or e-beam irradiation, uses high-energy electrons to sterilize medical devices and pharmaceuticals. It works by directing a steady flow of electrons through pharmaceutical drugs. The flow of electrons breaks apart chains of DNA in any organisms that might be present in the pharmaceuticals, effectively sterilizing the medications.
E-beam irradiation is currently the best way to sterilize pellets as autoclaving and other methods do not comply with industry standards when it comes to sterilizing pellets. Furthermore, e-beam sterilization ensures a product that meets Pavilion Compounding Pharmacy’s strict criteria for safety, efficacy, and patient acceptance.
For more information about custom compounding, bioidentical hormones, sterile hormone pellets, and Atrevis™ Hydrogel, contact Pavilion Compounding Pharmacy.
Our PCAB/ACHC Accredited compounding pharmacy has provided compounded both sterile and non-sterile custom formulations for patients and providers for more than 20 years.