So you want some straight answers to help you make a decision about pellet therapy. That’s not surprising – there’s so much “pro” information out there! Surely there must be “cons” as well?
There are! And it’s important to consider both pros and cons for you, in connection with issues like
- weight loss,
- general hormone replacement, and
- testosterone replacement.
Those are the issues people mostly search for online, and some people also want to know:
- What if pellet therapy doesn’t work?
- Can pellet therapy cause cancer?
These are serious questions that deserve a serious answer. And we’ll provide them. Because, although pellet therapy is incredibly convenient and popular, it isn’t necessarily the right choice for everyone. There are other methods of delivering the hormone(s) if you decide against pellets.
If you’re someone who prefers to discuss your concerns in person, though, contact us here today to talk to one of our consultants.
Otherwise, let’s clear the air and get the low-down on pellet therapy – both pros and cons. Then we’ll answer those two questions.
Pros of Pellet Therapy
Ease of Undertaking Pellet Therapy
If you have a busy schedule and can’t afford the time to keep traveling to a clinic for hormone injections, pellet therapy offers ease of use.
You make only 2-4 outpatient visits to your provider each year.
Why does pellet therapy need so few visits? The tiny pellets – the size of a grain of rice – release the hormones into your bloodstream for approximately 3-6 months.
Ease of Pellet Therapy Insertion
Whichever blend of hormones your therapy contains, the insertion process is equally easy for you. Your provider
- uses a local anesthetic,
- makes a tiny (1/4”) incision in your lower abdomen or hip,
- places the pellets, and
- seals the site with medical tape.
No stitches. No scars.
Steady Release of Dosage
You won’t have to experience the peaks and valleys you might notice when using other delivery methods. This is because the dose is released in a stable stream via the pellets. Bio-identical pellets are made to mimic the natural ones you’re trying to replace, and they’re supplied to your body just like your originals! Other delivery methods can be a little variable.
Less Risk of Error
With any medication, you need to feel you took no unnecessary risks! With pellet therapy you have the security of knowing you haven’t compromised your results by non-adherence. You’ll be sure you’re getting what you intended to achieve from the treatment.
That’s because “forgetting” doesn’t apply with pellet therapy. Your provider is responsible for the dose, the implanting, and the timing of visits. When the pellets’ time is up, they dissolve. And your next appointment is due.
This is therefore an important “pro” if you prefer to avoid the risk of accidentally missing doses.
Now let’s turn to those cons.
Cons of Pellet Therapy
Pellets Are Not Removable
There’s a risk of over-treatment if you don’t choose a provider wisely. Your provider can add pellets after the initial procedure but not remove them. So you must be sure to have treatment from a highly trained and experienced provider. You can overcome this “con” by checking credentials first.
It’s Not Easy to Adjust Dosage in Between Visits
Your provider will do a thorough assessment of the state of your hormones to start with and measure your dose carefully. However, if you were to have side effects and need a different dose, this is less easily adjusted. You’d have to wait until your next visit when your body has completely absorbed the hormones.
Possible Discomfort After Insertion
Although planting the pellets under your skin is a minor – often painless – procedure, it does carry a low risk of complications afterwards.
- There’s a small chance of infection.
- You may feel some discomfort during and after the procedure, including mild bruising, swelling, or redness of the incision site.
Pellet Therapy Requires a Recovery Period
Providers recommend avoiding strenuous physical activity and prolonged water exposure for several days after implantation. This may cause a problem with your schedule. Especially so if you experience the discomfort mentioned above during this period and want to rest up.
Slightly Higher Cost of Pellet Therapy
According to your financial situation, it might be a “con” to find that pellet therapy costs a bit more than other forms of hormone therapy. But you may want to weigh this against the longer-term gains of convenience.
And now for those serious questions we promised answers to.
The Question of Pellet Therapy and Cancer
Dealing with testosterone pellet therapy first: It seems from recent evidence that the benefits far outweigh the risk of men developing prostate cancer.
In terms of women undertaking bioidentical hormone therapy (BHRT) via pellets or any other method: To avoid the minimal risks, the best advice is to check for breast lumps as usual, attend for mammograms once a year, and discuss the course of your therapy with your medical provider whenever you have concerns.
It’s worth noting that BHRT in general is often used to improve the symptoms of those already undergoing cancer treatment. And a 2013 study by Glazer showed that adherence to testosterone pellet therapy reduced the incidence of breast cancer in a target group of women.
The Question of Pellet Therapy “Not Working”
Although the pellets enter your bloodstream at a consistent rate, the most common reasons for the treatment to appear not to be working are these:
- Significant stress, which always affects your hormones. With BHRT pellets, it’s no different.
- Competition with other medical conditions you may have. These include high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and thyroid issues.
If neither stress nor a medical condition is the answer, you may simply need a raised dosage at your next scheduled visit. Everyone is different.
Still Have Some Questions About Pellet Therapy Pros and Cons?
At Evexias Medical Centers, we specialize in all forms of hormone replacement therapy, including pellet therapy. We take time to meet up with you, listen carefully to your concerns, and develop a plan specifically for your needs and lifestyle. Contact us for an appointment today!