Cosmetic Procedures and Aging Skin: Can BHRT Help?
Hormone Replacement and the Skin
As women age, they start to recognize a dramatic change in their skin. This is often due to a decline of estrogen in the body, which causes the inactivity of estrogen receptors and loss of estrogen production in the skin. Dry, rough, burning, and thin skin, as well as fine lines and wrinkles, can develop when estrogen is no longer being produced1.
Studies have indicated that estrogen therapy can increase collagen and hyaluronic acid production to improve skin thickness and hydration. A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Dermatology found that estrogen therapy restores skin thickness, decreases wrinkle depth, and improves collagen production and hydration. One study showed that women using hormone replacement therapy had a 10 to 20 percent increase in skin thickness, when compared to those not being treated. HRT also reduced atrophy (fragile, fading skin) that occurs in aging skin1.
HRT Can Speed Surgery Recovery
Hormonal changes often cause an age-related delay in the healing of body tissue and skin. An estrogen deficiency can dramatically decrease the rate of cellular response to injuries2. Restoring healthy hormone levels, particularly estrogen, can increase the rate of healing among individuals recovering from injuries or surgical procedures.
Patient Demand for Youthful Health and Appearance
Cosmetic surgery is commonly used among postmenopausal women to bring back a more youthful appearance. Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is an added bonus for cosmetic surgery patients, because it supports the healing process and speeds recovery from surgery.
Dr. Neal Rouzier explains the benefits of using HRT among cosmetic surgery patients; “I personally have found longevity and preventive medicine to be a natural extension of cosmetic surgery. Patients find they can surgically reverse the effects of gravity and aging through face-lifts, eyelifts and liposuction. When I prescribe HRT to a patient before surgery, they heal faster and feel better postoperatively. If the patient continues the natural hormone supplements post operatively, two wonderful things happen. First, they will probably experience improved results of the tummy tuck or face lift, due to the strengthening and thickening of the skin. Second, they will begin to feel good with increased energy, libido, skin texture, muscle-to-fat distribution, and improved mental clarity. Most of all, I give my surgical patients a choice in how they age after their cosmetic surgery.”
Choosing the right form of HRT
While HRT has been shown to benefit aging skin, all HRT is not created equal. As an important reminder, synthetic HRT is considered harmful, as certain risk factors are associated with this type of treatment. Bioidentical HRT, hormones that are similar to those produced in the body, is a safer alternative to conventional HRT. This form of therapy protects women from health ailments related to the loss of hormones that comes with aging. Plus, bioidentical HRT has incredible benefits on improving skin quality. Remember, it is always best to support HRT guidelines that are based on peer-reviewed studies and protocols that have been tried and tested.
- Vaillant L, Callens A. Hormone replacement treatment and skin aging. Therapie. 1996;51(1):67-70.
- Ashcroft GS, Ashworth JJ. Potential role of estrogens in wound healing. Am J Clin Dermatol. 2003;4(11):737-743.
- Shu YY, Maibach HI. Estrogen and skin: therapeutic options. Am J of Clin Derm. 2011 Oct;12(5):297-311.