HOW TO PICK AN HRT DOCTOR
Many women are finding out that the surgeons who performed their surgeries were not the best choice for them when trying to balance their hormones. Most surgeons focus their expertise and training on surgical related issues and are not up to date in the area of hormone therapy. This can leave women feeling a bit abandoned or pushed off to the side, and they will need to figure out how to get the best help available. There is no one type of specialty doctor that will be better than another. What makes a great hormone doctor is their ability to listen and work with the patient, and to be up to date on all hormonal therapies and options. Below are some helpful tips to finding a good hormone doctor.
Word of Mouth:
Ask your friends and family members which doctors they have used and liked. Often times getting a referral from someone you know will lead you to a great doctor. If you don’t have any friends or family that you can ask, try asking your Family Doctor. Family Doctors are great for physicals, and overall health. However, they may not have had the time to stay up to date in HRT. Getting a referral from them could lead you to a well trained doctor.
Types of Doctors:
Good doctors can come in any speciality, however there are some specific doctors that train extensively in hormones and hormone replacement therapy, they are:
Naturopathic Doctors: Naturopathic Doctors tend to have more training in bioidentical hormones. Be sure they are licensed.
Certified A4M: A4M is also known as the American Academy of AntiAging. It is another certification that doctors can have that includes additional training for bioidentical hormones.
Functional Medicine or Endocrinologists: Some of you will need to go through your insurance company (Naturopaths tend to not be covered under insurance). Whether or not a certain doctor is covered by insurance will depend on your plan. To find a good doctor look for someone who states that they do integrative medicine and/or functional medicine. An endocrinologist also can be a big help to women who have more difficult cases that involve the thyroid, or PCOS.
That being said, some of these recommended types of doctors can be under educated or not up to date in hormone replacement. There is nothing worse than waiting for an appointment, only to get there and find out that a doctor really doesn’t know much about HRT or how to adjust them for women in surgical menopause. To help you weed out those doctors, here are a list of questions you can ask the office or the doctors themselves.
Do you know the difference between surgical and natural menopause? If they say there is no difference or they don’t know, walk away. If they say yes, then ask them “what is usually the difference in treatment?” Let them explain and see if they seem educated and up to date on hormone replacement.
How much hormone replacement do you do? You want someone who treats menopausal patients regularly. If they seem up to date on their knowledge and see multiple different types of patients, they will likely have a wider range of experience and knowledge to help you.
Will you be able to devote time to work with me to individualize treatment? Lots of ladies in surgical menopause need closer monitoring and follow-up. The doctor should be available regularly for more communication and tweaking of medication if needed. Ask them if that’s something they will have the time to do. If you’re someone who balances very easily on HRT then this may not be an issue, but if your body or your case is more complicated and needs extra fine tuning, this could make or break finding a good balance in your hormones.