Estrogen – The Female Hormone
Estrogen is a hormone familiar to most everyone as the ‘female hormone’. It gives women soft skin and curves, high lilting voices, and breasts. It has over 400 functions, and a powerful emotional, psychological, and physiological effect on our bodies. It is produced primarily in the ovaries, with a small amount produced by the adrenal glands. At menopause, a precipitous fall in estrogen leads to changes that can cause a suite of unpleasant symptoms, like hot flashes, insomnia, mood swings, vaginal atrophy, depression and forgetfulness, or —feeling less ‘sharp’.
There’s a great deal of controversy surrounding estrogen replacement therapies – many studies have been conducted, with confusing and sometimes contradictory results regarding risks for endometrial and breast cancer, as well as cardiovascular disease. I have written about these studies extensively in my blog. I believe that natural bio identical estrogen can be safely prescribed for women without existing cardiovascular disease, in combination with an appropriate dose of bio-identical progesterone.