When Are Bio-Identical Hormones Worth $3500?

The answer is NEVER, but you wouldn’t believe that if you read the article in the Southwest Airlines flight magazine. It featured a male physician who claims he is a “feminist” because he only treats women with bio-identical hormones. As you read through this slick article, you discover he accepts cash only, no insurance payments, and claims an 85% success rate…at what I’m not sure, unless it’s collections! The average cost for his therapy? $1800-3500 for his exclusive “bio-identical” formulas.

The article goes on to state that “every woman has a 50% drop in energy levels by age 50″ which he claims is due to a decline in thyroid hormone production, but feels blood tests don’t tell him how much thyroid hormone to give. So, he treats EVERY woman with thyroid, progesterone, cortisol, a little estrogen ( he doesn’t state WHAT kind..estradiol, estriol, estrone and in what format, but heh, let’s not get picky here for that price!)…and a slew of vitamins along with 5HTP, melatonin. He claims bio-identical hormones are not patentable…so therefore no drug company provides them, only counterfeit hormones. Gee…I guess all those 17 beta-estradiol and estriol and estrone products are phonier than a $3 bill! He has NO clinical studies ( he does “outcome based studies” which means they are anecdotal) and has no blood levels to follow his therapy.

It was a good thing the “fasten seat belt” sign was on as I read this article, or I would have hit the ceiling! It’s an outrage that a physician would make such false claims in order to prey upon women’s fear of hormones at present. His ignorance and hutzpah are only matched by his billings and I hesitate at how much damage this hormone program will wreck on unsuspecting women looking for the “fountain of youth.”

Bio-identical hormones have been available for more than 10 years, and are patented under the format of delivery aspect…a little something this doc seems to have no clue about! Creams cannot deliver 17 beta-estradiol across the dermis because the molecule is just too large! It takes an alcohol gel or a microsphere or a dializing membrane to do it, but you can also swallow it. And for every drug you take, there is a LAB TEST to determine it’s absorption and response in your body, because that is a requirement for FDA approval. However, creams and witches brews sold over the counter ( talk about counterfeit drugs!) have no such standards. As discussed in my books, most of these products, when put to a standardization test, have little or no hormone in them to start!

So when is “bio-identical” hormone therapy worth $3500? When cows can fly!

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About Larrian
Larrian Gillespie is a gynecologic urologist who received her medical degree from the University of California at Los Angeles School of Medicine and practiced Urology and Urogynecology in Beverly Hills for 15 years before retiring.With an ability to translate “doctor speak” into terms anyone can understand, Larrian has been featured in over 75 magazine stories and numerous television shows, including Good Morning America, CBS Woman to Woman News, and CNN. She has served on the medical advisory board of SHAPE Magazine, Prevention Books, Readers Digest Books,Oxmoor Books, Low Carb Energy and been a frequent source for numerous other publications, including WebMD.

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