I went through a fairly early Menopause and have been on HRT (Elleste Duet 2 mg) for 7 years now. I had 2 years of absolutely horrendous symptoms before I was put on HRT and within a week or two virtually all my symptoms had gone and it gave me life back. I've been happily taking this until last year when for three months there were manufacturing difficulties and I was put on Cliofem (continual oestrogen and projesterone) and this caused me very bad heart palpitations and just generally feeling unwell...then Elleste Duet 2mg was back in production again so I was put back on that and have been fine but a few months ago there were again manufacturing problems with it and so I've been out on Tridestra 2mg and it's really awful and has made me feel Ill again (2 half months estrogen, then 2 weeks oestrogen and projesterone and 7 days placebo tablets with no hormones) . I rang the pharmacy and my GP to ask when Elleste Duet would be available again and you would have thought I was being unreasonable by their reactions...they were very abrupt and said they didn't know and sort of made out I was making a fuss. If men had to go through the often horrendous symptoms of Menopause I doubt very much there would be shortages of HRT or lack of funding to pay the correct price by the NHS. I'm not being unreasonable to be able to want to get on with my life without horrendous menopausal symptoms am I?
I don’t take HRT but have absolutely no issues with other people taking it. Just because a person doesn’t take HRT doesn’t mean that person is opposed to it. I don’t take it, I’m happy for anyone else to take it when it helps them.
I was on Elleste Duet 2 mg happily for years and then switched down to the 1 mg dose because I thought I ought to. Now I can't find Elleste Duet 1 mg or 2 mg anywhere so I asked the GP to give me Femoston 1 mg which is made by the same company. I researched it myself because when I asked the GP, I was given a brand for women without wombs but luckily I spotted that! I used the menopause society website mentioned by others above. 3 months later and I'm fine.
If you can't get a referral to a clinic or the waiting list is very long, my advice is to research your own equivalent and then ask your GP because they don't all necessarily know much about the menopause.
I'm on Evorel Conti there were shortages but my GP allowed me to stockpile, think because its my chosen treatment for bones after fractures. They are back to normal now. I have patches and they are no trouble.
I have been told that the cost to the NHS in treating the consequences of menopause far exceeds the cost of providing HRT. The doctor who said that to me reckoned that with all the protective benefits coming to light it won't be long before women are actively encouraged to try HRT if appropriate.
Personally I find the use of langue like 'anti-whatever brigade offensive' - the word brigade has taken on negative connotations and it's a pity that women feel the need to use it against other women. At the same time I find hidden attacks equally offensive. Some people have unimaginable menopause symptoms whilst others don't. I fell into the former category and was given HRT by one GP only to be swiftly taken off it by a hospital consultant who directed me towards the abundant research demonstrating why someone in my position shouldn't be taking it. So I had to simply put up with it, and I wouldn't wish my experiences on anyone. However, what I want to throw into the mix is that pricing of certain brands of HRT is an important issue because in the part of London where I live, the CCG has issued instructions to all GP practices to prescribe the absolute cheapest of all generic drugs and this is unfortunately the shape of things to come. Economics and politics are ruling drug prices and supply. Who are those making the economic policies and other political decisions in our country ... men of course!
GoldenAge. I have asked around to find out if the word “brigade” or phrases using it are considered offensive. The feedback I received is that it is used these days for a group, usually a militant one as in “the anti-mask brigade”, “the vegan brigade” etc. It does indicate disapproval but is hardly offensive and this is exactly how I used it in my post.
Regarding prescription medicine I am of the opinion that generic medicine is appropriate if it works. Just because something has a brand name doesn’t make it necessarily superior. Most generic medication I have taken has done the job perfectly well.
Esspee just to put the record straight I’m not any kind of zealot, not am I anti-HRT. I merely tried to put the record straight, that Premarin is still produced and used widely. It doesn’t help anyone who is having problems with menopause, and who raises a question, to read inaccurate information.
Linda wrote on Friday "Sorry but I fear that Brexit will cause shortages of a range of medicines. " I've been worried about this too, but up to now it has been ok. Like many of us on here I've been using Vagifem - estradiol - for years. I tried coming off it but returned to frequent UTIs because of vaginal drynes. Vagifem is mostly made by a company in Norway, and recently perhaps in the USA so imports could be affected.
I find it alarming that HRT is seen as ok to be messed about with, I think women should be able to rely on their prescription being ready, not be on tenterhooks as to whether they will receive the correct thing or not. I disagree with the horse abuse but the plant one sounds good. If men had menopause symptoms there is no way these meds would get mucked about constantly.