Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) is the treatment of the hormone deficiencies caused by menopause using only molecules that are identical to the endogenous female hormones. BHRT differs from traditional hormone replacement therapy which includes animal-derived and invented molecules that are similar to, but not identical to human hormones.
The primary bioidentical female hormones, estradiol and progesterone, are available in both FDA-approved and individualized pharmacy-compounded products. "BHRT" is sometimes use more generally to describe the practice of using only bioidentical hormones in the treatment of all hormone deficiencies.
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BHRT proponents argue that studies show significant differences between bioidentical and non-bioidentical hormones, and that replacing hormones lost due to menopause not only relieves symptoms but can improve health and quality of life. The actress Suzanne Somers has been a prominent advocate of BHRT in the media.