What is Bioidentical hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT)?

Bio-identical hormone replacement therapy is exactly what it sounds like. It is using hormones that are identical to the hormones naturally made by your body. Bio-identical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) has transformed the healthcare of men and women as they enter the second half of their lives. It provides an alternative to hormones that are synthetic, like injectable testosterone, or concentrated from horse urine (Premarin). Patients taking BHRT usually prepared by compounding pharmacists can be given in dosages tailored to their individual needs; instead of the narrow choices available with mass-produced hormone therapies (one size fits all).

The interest in a more natural approach to hormone therapy has focused attention on bio-identical hormones — hormones that are identical in molecular structure to the hormones men and women make in their bodies. They are not found in this form in nature but are derived and made from plant compounds extracted from yams and soy. Bio-identical hormone therapy is often called “natural hormone therapy” because bio-identical hormones act just like the hormones produced by your body.

On a blood test, your total estradiol or testosterone not only measures the bio-identical estrogen or testosterone you’ve taken but also the amount of those hormones your body makes. On the other hand, Premarin, the old standby estrogen used for decades is metabolized into various forms of estrogen that are dangerous and are not measured by standard laboratory tests. Proponents of bio-identical hormones say that one important advantage of bio-identical therapy is that hormone levels can be monitored more precisely and treatment individualized accordingly.

Who needs BHRT?

Almost all of us over the age of 40 (and in many cases over 30) begin to experience hormone imbalance. Over our lifetime, we are exposed to environmental and dietary toxins, which contribute to the natural decline of hormones as we age. In order to balance your hormones for optimal health and wellness, it is critical to be evaluated by a highly trained physician – including comprehensive lab testing and in depth initial questionnaires – prior to creating a personalized treatment plan.

Is BHRT right for you?

Many factors can contribute to conditions and diseases that can occur at any stage in life, resulting from an imbalance of hormones:

  • Adrenal fatigue
  • Thyroid disease
  • Metabolic Syndrome
  • Sexual dysfunction

Symptom profile


As a result of hormone imbalance, you may be experiencing one or a combination of what have become known as the classic symptoms of aging:

  • Fatigue
  • Anxiety
  • Weight Gain
  • Low Sex Drive
  • Night Sweats
  • Loss of Energy
  • Depression
  • Mental Fog
  • Insomnia
  • Lack of Motivation
  • Headaches
  • Hot Flashes


Men may experience these symptoms of low testosterone levels:

  • Loss of Energy
  • Low Sex Drive
  • Weight Gain
  • Irritable, Moody
  • Loss of Focus
  • Insomnia
  • Decreased Sense of Well-being
  • Decrease in lean muscle mass
  • Increase body fat
  • Middle-aged Spread or Beer Belly
  • Increased Fatigue
  • Decreased Erectile Function
  • Loss of Muscle Mass and Strength
  • Increased Belly Fat
  • Depression and Anxiety
  • Loss of Confidence
  • Decreased endurance

Medical exam

  • A comprehensive review of symptoms, medical, family and personal history
  • Testing – saliva, urine and/or blood laboratory analysis
  • Natural hormone balancing
  • Ongoing evaluations
  • Quality compounded pharmacy
  • Highest quality supplements
  • Fitness programs
  • Nutrition planning
  • Stress reduction plans

Lab Testing Serum & Saliva

The hormone tests used by Advanced Practice Clinic include the saliva hormone test, serum hormone tests and the saliva and blood spot combination assessment.

Saliva Hormone Tests

One of the simplest methods of measuring hormone levels is the saliva hormone test. Saliva tests are used to detect the levels of sex-hormones produced by the body. The saliva samples should be collected in the morning, afternoon, evening and before bedtime to accurately measure your cortisol levels, which fluctuate throughout the day. Measuring cortisol levels provides an accurate assessment of symptoms of adrenal fatigue.

Serum Hormone Tests

Some hormones circulating in the bloodstream, such as the thyroid hormones and insulin, do not enter the saliva because of their large size; this means that saliva hormone tests cannot measure these hormones.

These additional hormone tests will not only help your physician get a clear picture of your hormone levels, but also allows your provider to tailor a personalized wellness program that addresses your individual needs.

Saliva and Blood Spot Combination Hormone Tests

Combining the saliva and blood spot tests in one, easy-to-use kit provides a powerful tool for assessing the levels of a wide array of hormones that may be causing your symptoms. Hormones tested in saliva and blood spot tests are strongly correlated with symptoms of hormone imbalance. This is key information providers use to identify hormone imbalances, track the efficiency of a prescribed treatment and make adjustments to your dosage throughout the treatment process.

Keep in mind that saliva hormone tests are entirely non-invasive and the blood spot, also referred to as a capillary test, involves a simple, nearly painless finger-stick with the tiny lancet provided in the kit. Drops of blood are collected on a filter card and allowed to dry. No special processing of the blood is required and the hormones in the dried blood are remarkably stable at room temperature for up to a month. You simply collect the saliva and blood at your convenience in your home, fill out the forms, and send the sample to the laboratory for testing in the prepaid package. Flexible, convenient, and stress free sample collection are only a few reasons to test this way.

Simple Tests for an Extraordinary Solution

The simple saliva tests and blood spot tests described above allow Advanced Practice providers to get an accurate picture of what is going on inside the body. This information makes all the difference in designing your personalized treatment plan. These tests are the first step towards a healthier, happier you.