Fact or Fiction? The Role of Regulated Body-Identical Hormone Therapy for Menopausal Women

Nurs Womens Health. 2022 Apr;26(2):143-151. doi: 10.1016/j.nwh.2022.01.012. Epub 2022 Feb 18.

Abstract

Many menopausal women use hormone therapy, including regulated body-identical hormone therapy (rBHT), to relieve vasomotor symptoms and prevent cardiovascular disease. Despite growing interest in rBHT, there is uncertainty regarding potential benefits and risks. With this narrative review, we aimed to synthesize the literature regarding the efficacy of these therapies for managing vasomotor symptoms and preventing cardiovascular disease. Thirteen articles were identified, with authors of several studies showing rBHT and combination therapy (rBHT with synthetic hormone therapy) to be efficacious in managing vasomotor symptoms when compared to placebo. Conflicting evidence exists regarding the efficacy of rBHT in the prevention of cardiovascular disease, with some studies demonstrating improved cardiovascular biomarkers, particularly among women who are at the beginning of the menopausal journey and experiencing symptoms. In summary, rBHT may have a role in the care of women trying to manage vasomotor symptoms and in protecting against cardiovascular disease among menopausal women; however, larger, more rigorously designed randomized controlled trials are required.

Keywords: bioidentical; body-identical; cardiovascular disease; estrogen; hormone replacement therapy; hormone therapy; hot flash; menopause; progesterone; vasomotor symptoms.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cardiovascular Diseases* / prevention & control
  • Estrogen Replacement Therapy
  • Female
  • Hormones / therapeutic use
  • Hot Flashes* / drug therapy
  • Humans
  • Menopause

Substances

  • Hormones