Is HRT the same as bioidentical hormones?

Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) are similar, but have some key differences. Both involve taking hormones to supplement low levels, commonly used to treat symptoms of menopause and aging. However, the types of hormones used differ:


Both HRT and BHRT may provide relief from menopausal symptoms like hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, decreased bone density and cholesterol changes. Potential benefits include:

Side Effects and Risks

Some key differences lie in their potential side effects and health risks:




Balance and Customization

Experts recommend using the lowest effective dose of hormones for symptom relief. BHRT claims an advantage in offering more customizable doses and routes of administration through creams, gels or pellets. HRT is available in standard doses as oral tablets or patches.


Comprehensive pre-treatment testing of hormone levels allows tailoring of BHRT regimens, but is not commonly done with standard HRT. Testing estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, DHEA and other hormone levels can guide appropriate dosing especially with BHRT.

Ongoing monitoring and adjustment may be more feasible with the flexibility of bioidentical preparations, as opposed to standard doses of conventional HRT medications.

In summary, while both BHRT and HRT provide hormone supplementation, BHRT offers more natural, identical hormones that closely mimic the body’s own hormones.

Potential advantages of bioidentical hormones include lower risks, more customizable doses and routes of administration, and more effective hormone balancing when guided by testing.

Work closely with your healthcare provider to determine which option may be most suitable based on your hormone levels, symptoms, risks, lifestyle factors and treatment goals.

I hope this provides a comprehensive overview explaining how bioidentical hormone therapy compares to standard hormone replacement therapy. Please let me know if you need any clarification or have additional questions!

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