Side effects of estrogen replacement therapy

Side effects of estrogen replacement therapy


Nowadays, Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) has become a very common form of treatment in surgically perimenopausal, menopausal, and postmenopausal women. During this phase, the estrogen hormones start diminishing and this therapy effectively mitigates the discomfort caused by this reduction in hormone levels. Once you decide to take the estrogen replacement therapy (ERT), you need to further choose on the medium – whether it will be pills, suppositories, patches, and more. Although, the physician would be the best person to choose the best type of medium for you considering various factors like your health, personal preference, symptoms, and the final aim of treatment. Unfortunately there are many side effects of estrogen replacement therapy that brings this form of treatment on the loop. Here we shall discuss the side effects found from a useful source.

  • Estrogen therapies can cause increased chances of blood clots, strokes, and other problems. If the therapy is being administered along with hormone progestin, the side effects are even more as there are risks of breast cancer and heart attack.
  • If the therapy is given through oral pills, the prominent side effect is painful and swollen breasts, excessive vaginal discharge, incessant headache, and nausea.
  • It can also be hard on the liver; strictly it is said by the experts that people with liver damage should not take estrogen replacement therapies.
  • These therapies can also lead to stomach disorders and long term digestive troubles. Estrogen sometimes is not well absorbed; it further increases levels of cholesterol since it gets metabolized in the liver.
  • Some very common side effects include fluid retention, bloating, nausea, indigestion, headaches, and leg cramps.
  • Loss of appetite leads to drastic changes in body weight in a very short span of time. This again brings fatigue and people undergoing the therapy easily get tired.
  • Estrogen replacement therapies can also have disastrous effect on teeth and gums; bleeding gums is a common side effect.
  • The person undergoing ERT can also confront depression and dizziness. Lens wearers will eventually suffer from dry eyes.
  • Some more side effects are hair loss, changes in menstrual cycle, jaundice, pain during menstruation, rash, mild diarrhea, changes in sex drive, vaginal bleeding and infection, and uterine fibroids.

However, the good news is that small lifestyle changes greatly aid in relieving these side effects. If you can take the oral estrogen dose with food; the possibilities of indigestion and nausea almost subsides. Try to keep your diet rich in carbohydrate and low in fat that will reduce the breast tenderness. Regular physical exercise is very important; simple stretches and some of the yoga asanas can help relive leg cramps.

In some extremely rare cases, estrogen replacement therapies can also cause chest pain, breathing difficulty, continuous leg pain, sudden urination urges, slurred speech, and visionary changes. Call the doctor immediately if you experience such symptoms.

Estrogen replacement therapy side effects can get aggravated with some drug interactions. The doctor should be informed about all the possible allergies and reactions before starting the estrogen therapy.


Article Submitted By Community Writer


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