The Art of Intimidation
Last month I visited a local medical surgery to have an annual check-up, order a bunch of tests (cholesterol, blood pressure, blood sugar, etc). I requested, in this consultation, an ultrasound of my ovaries and uterus. I like to have my “women’s bits” checked out every 2 years just so it’s not a guessing game on my part!
I mentioned in conversation I was using bioidentical progesterone and that it’d been a few years since my last test results. In a heartbeat, this doctor fires up, all outranged and flustered and shouts at me “don’t you know those creams cause cancer? I’m not having anything to do with you. Go back and see your usual doctor.”
As I’m sure you can well imagine, this is definitely not the first time I’ve been ‘dressed down’ by a medical professional who thinks he knows it all. Doctor’s like this guy are quite skilled in the art of intimidation. He had me on the ropes for a couple of minutes! But when you peel back the layers of misinformation, you get a sense that this guy hasn’t done his research. He’s probably read an article or two in a medical journal possibly posted by drug companies to intentionally cause confusion.
To make such an outrageous, ill-informed statement, you know Dr X hasn’t understood some fundamentals (1) that bioidentical progesterone is NOT the same as progesterone’s synthetic cousin – progestin and (2) that its these artificial progestins (not human-identical progesterone) that have been implicated in the causation of breast cancer.
Asking the Hard Questions
This week Dr Jeffrey Dach published a timely piece on ‘The Safety of Bio-Identical Hormones‘. He writes, “Lets ask the question do bio-identical hormones cause breast cancer? The French Cohort study looked at this question and the answer is: they found no increased breast cancer in the group using bio-identical hormones. Do Bio-identical Hormones Cause Death? The answer to this question is the opposite. All studies done with bio-identical hormones showed improved longevity and less mortality. Even the second arm of the WHI done with premarin alone showed reduced mortality in the hormone treated group. “
The Case for Bioidentical Hormones by Steven F. Hotze, M.D. and Donald P. Ellsworth, M.D.
Extract: A few billion dollars can purchase a lot of advertising to sway the public, hire hundreds of lobbyists, and buy influence with the FDA. According to Public Citizen’s Congress Watch: The drug industry spent $262 million on political influence in the 1999-2000 election cycle: $177 million on lobbying, $65 million on issue ads, and $20 million on campaign contributions.Thiswas more than any other industry spent over the same period for political persuasion. Additionally, a lot of money is spent to manipulate physicians—through sponsoring speakers, organizing symposia, and even conducting studies published as scholarly articles in prestigious journals. All these efforts are designed to give the impression that “evidence-based medicine” means the use of patented exogenous compounds. Physicians are dazzled with innumerable studies asking which is better—drug A or drug B? We seem to forget that sponsored studies have been shown to be biased, and we fall into the trap of assuming the answer must involve using patentable exogenous chemicals. In this discussion we are choosing neither drug A or B. We suggest the best solution is to work with the body and restore normal physiology—without introducing foreign compounds to the body’s delicate web of interactions.
The Safety of Bioidentical Hormones — the Data vs. the Hype by Jacob Teitelbaum, MD
Extract: As a friend of mine used to say, “If things don’t make sense, follow the money trail.” Because the sale of non-bioidentical estrogen and progesterone makes so much money for drug companies, I suspect that those companies find their profits very threatened by the use of safer or bioidentical hormones. As has frequently been the case when natural products threaten pharmaceutical sales, there appears to be a major public relations misinformation campaign. Although I am not privy to what goes on in the pharmaceutical “back rooms,” my impression is that they feel that if consumers can be confused and frightened enough by misinformation, profits can be protected. My impression (as a physician without a financial stake in either side) is that bioidentical hormones are far safer and effective than synthetic progesterone and pregnant horse urine (Premarin). Historically, unfortunately, when there is big money to be made, there has been no problem getting big-name doctors to tout the health benefits of infant formula over breast milk and even of smoking! It’s sad when information put out by actresses, like Suzanne Somers in her recent book Ageless (on bioidentical hormones), is more accurate than information put out by prominent physicians! But this is what happens when money talks.
Women In Balance – Progesterone Safety Research
Extract: There is no documented evidence in the scientific literature of any cases of cancer as a result of treatment with bioidentical progesterone. Unfortunately, progesterone has been implicated in the development of breast cancer because of the results of large trials in which an increase in the incidence of breast cancer was seen when synthetic progestins were used in combination with estrogens for postmenopausal hormone therapy. These studies, such as the Women’s Health Initiative, DID NOT use bioidentical progesterone. A large European study, on the other hand, found that women using bioidentical progesterone plus estrogen had a lower risk of breast cancer than women using estrogen alone, whereas women using synthetic progestins plus estrogen had a significantly higher risk of breast cancer.
Doctors Don’t Know What They Don’t Know
I wrote extensively on this subject in 2006 in my rebuttal ‘Natural Progesterone – Cancer in a Cream?‘.
As a personal account, I’ve incorporated bioidentical progesterone in my health regime for over a 15 years and it has, without question, kept me in optimal health. I’m told I look much younger than my 55 years, I rarely if ever get sick, recent test results confirm my blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, FSH, etc., are all good, and I’m physically very strong. In fact, I’ve taken up paddling outrigger canoe marathons with my husband who, incidentally, has been dabbing on a little progesterone cream for just as many years! How can any physician argue with such positive outcomes! And I’m NOT on my own. Women all around the globe are getting results!
Arrogant “know it all” doctors like the one I happened to cross paths with the other day set out to frighten women away from using quality biodientical progesterone creams on the basis that over-the-counter creams have not been tested. How can medical professionals make such an unfounded claim? There are some very safe creams on the market today that adhere to a quality testing procedure second to none (guarantee that each batch is manufactured to exact specifications). According to Dr X, even a local cream produced by a reputable pharmaceutical company in Western Australia was ‘suspect’. Talk about head in the sand!
In being so righteous, daft doctors like my Dr X are quite deliberately (perhaps negligently) denying women with low progesterone levels access to a treatment protocol that present-day research is proving confers protections against breast cancer.
Doctors Need to Find Their Brains
Let’s leave the closing words of advice to Dr. Randolph, celebrated as a physician champion of natural medicine and women’s health, as well as a pioneer in the realms of personalized medicine and natural hormone therapies. As a trained pharmacist and Board Certified practicing gynecologist, Dr. Randolph has treated thousands of women suffering from the symptoms of hormone imbalance. He’s built a sound foundation of clinical evidence to support the safety and efficacy of treating patients with human-identical hormones (e.g. estrogens, progesterone, testosterone) vs. synthetic hormone replacement therapies (HRT): “If doctors want to do the right thing and keep their patients’ loyalty, they need to get their heads out of the pharmaceutical companies’ pockets. They need to return to their role as patient advocates. They need to take the initiative to read all the medical evidence; e.g. the studies that incriminate synthetic HRT as well as the ones that support bio-identical HRT. More women will be better off once more doctors find their brains, review the literature and, then, decide for themselves what type of HRT they feel is best for their patients.”
In love & gratitude,
Catherine P. Rollins
Founder & CEO
Ethically Supporting Women’s Choice of BHRT Since 2001