Dear Pharmacist,
I have a friend who is taking HRT and she loves it. I’m over sixty and I’ve never taken it and I still get hot flashes and lots of really annoying stuff. Can I start taking it now?

There is no hard and fast rule or age that hormone replacement therapy (HRT, also known as HT) is not appropriate. What you must do is have a frank discussion with your doctor. Before making your appointment, keep a journal and document the frequency and severity of your hot flashes and other “annoying stuff”.

Be ready to tell your doctor about how this is negatively impacting your quality of life. Your doctor can then decide, based upon your medical history, whether or not HRT will be appropriate for you. HRT can be started after 60 in patients with no contraindications to it. Your doctor will start you at a low dose and monitor your outcome. Keep up that symptom journal!

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Meet Deborah Kerr. She's a huge advocate for patient-focused healthcare. After twenty years of store management in community pharmacy, and ten years of corporate management for independent pharmacy, she developed an itch. The more she scratched, the more it spread. Why does menopause take so many women by surprise? Why does it have the ability to impact relationships, and families, and workplaces. It's insidious. She found herself shouting, "there has to be a better way".

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