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Have you been affected by the shortage of HRT products?

Medical experts are calling for action to resolve the national shortage of hormone replacement therapy (HRT) products used to treat menopausal symptoms.

The shortage is causing difficulties for thousands of women in the UK, medical experts have said.

Many women approaching menopause in the UK have been struggling to access the drugs for the past year, which reproductive health bodies say is due to ongoing manufacturing and supply issues.

But the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) and British Menopause Society (BMS) say it is still unclear why the shortages started and why they “seem to be unique to the UK”.

There are also concerns that more recent reports of shortages of contraceptives will be detrimental to the physical and mental wellbeing of women and girls, the Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare (FSRH) said.

The three organisations have written to Health Secretary Matt Hancock calling for a group to be set up to address the root cause of the shortages, following what they call an “extremely frustrating” lack of transparency.

HRT is prescribed to women to replace their body’s declining levels of oestrogen during the menopause.

There are currently around 360,000 prescriptions of HRT medicines dispensed every month on the NHS.

In October, the DHSC restricted exports of 19 HRT medications to help address the shortfall in the UK.

What is your experience? Have you been affected by the shortage of HRT products? Have you had to use alternatives as your prescribed product is not available? 

Have you been affected by the shortage of HRT products?

230 people have already voted, what's your opinion? Yes No

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Felix1
26th Feb 2020
0
Thanks for voting!
I was all for it until I read where it was obtained. Before that I had taken it for a couple of months and experienced horrendous headaches and gained a lot of weight.
viking
22nd Feb 2020
0
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Picking up the thread on this, and looking through the smoke, it would seem that "certified clinical information" can be certified by those with an agenda to produce whatever result is required. If this information is really correct, why can these drugs be supplied on the continent of Europe with no problems ??
viking
15th Feb 2020
2
Thanks for voting!
There does not seem to be a shortage of HRT in Scandinavia, but talking to a medican it seems that the drug companies have banded together to try and force the NHS to pay a considerable increase in the price. The NHS are now trying to re-negotiate a much more realistic price for these products hence the shortage of supplies in the UK.
Lionel
15th Feb 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
That sounds about right, Viking.
jeanmark
17th Feb 2020
0
Thanks for voting!
Information from the Patient.info page:

......Currently there is little explanation for the shortages beyond manufacturing and supplier issues, although an increased uptake due to awareness of the benefits of HRT may be partially responsible.

Janssen, manufacturer of Evorel HRT treatment, have seen "an unusual increase in demand for HRT over recent months across a number of countries, including the UK", leading to a reduction in the supply of Evorel products. In part, this increased demand was due to shortages of products including Theramex's FemSeven range since the end of 2018, causing women to switch to other brands.

"We need to understand the reasons behind this and what measures could be taken to resolve this issue and to prevent it happening again in the future. It remains unclear why there is a shortage of the treatments in the first place or when the normal supply of the products might resume. We are seeking further information and clarification, as to when the matter will be resolved, from the industry," said Chair of the BMS and consultant gynaecologist, Haitham Hamoda.
viking
21st Feb 2020
0
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Well jeanmark I think this piece of information is a prime example of "smoke and mirrors", and does a very good job of confusing the issue.
jeanmark
21st Feb 2020
0
Thanks for voting!
Maybe but it is a recognised site and the clinical information is certified to meet NHS England's Information Standard. I am always a little concerned when it is implied shortages are always the result of pharmaceutical companies holding governments to ransom when it is usually a combination of events and rarely the result of one single thing. I accept the shortage of surgical masks is as a direct result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).
liz30538
14th Feb 2020
0
Thanks for voting!
Back to having night sweats again. After not having them for so long due to HRT it’s horrendous
BaW
13th Feb 2020
0
Thanks for voting!
Having friends who had bad experiences with HRT, I declined it, but did change my diet to include the Linda Kearns HRT cake. This really helped me through - providing estrogen, vitamins and other nutrients to help manage the effects of menopause. The cake is more of a bread-pudding-style texture,and I added cherries and/or cranberries, or spread cream cheese on a slice. I believe there are now many more recipes to help balance hormonal changes, and would recommend trying this HRT cake. Am still baking it 15 years on...
MrsPat
13th Feb 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Margaret Hart
12th Feb 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
When I was in the change which was early in my 40s I was put on HRT and it did not agree with me even though they tried different types. In the end I was taken off it and managed much better without medication but i is a difficult time. Why is there a shortage of this medicatioN?
EllenT94
12th Feb 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
My Elleste Duet Conti was unavailable for a few months last year, and it’s happened again now. Just had a period of six weeks with no meds at all, now climbing the walls so my Gp has prescribed an alternative. It’s so frustrating as they can’t say when my normal one will become available again, and the alternatives never seem to have quite the same effect. I can’t function without it, and wish they’d get the supply issue sorted.
LaurelC
12th Feb 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I am one of the few people who have fought for continuing HRT long after the menopause. Over the years opinions have gone this way and that about its effects; I am still taking it at 90 years old, and I believe it has a lot to do with my well being, which is regarded as remarkable for my age. I still shop, cook and look after myself, get myself around by bus if I can, by taxi if I can't. I need no carers and go to the surgery once a year for my flu jab. My immunity system seems very strong. My BMI is perfect, and I enjoy food and drink. I have no aches and pains unless I do something silly.
After my (online) supplier let me down completely and I missed a whole month I changed suppliers and had to accept replacement patches for my usual ones. no ill effects. Now we are back to normal.
I look in vain for research into HRT for the wellbeing of the elderly, but no one seems interested.
jeanmark
12th Feb 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I have to say LaurelC, I'm not convinced it is HRT. I have a number of friends around your age who are very active in all aspects of life but are not on HRT. I had to start taking it after a hysterectomy and removal of ovaries at the age of 27. I stopped taking it at 65 when I could think of no real benefit in continuing and have not noticed difference in my life and well being.
LaurelC
12th Feb 2020
0
Thanks for voting!
We are all different, and react differently to things.
A bit of positive research instead of perpetual scaremongering wouldn't hurt.
jeanmark
13th Feb 2020
0
Thanks for voting!
That's a little harsh and my response is hardly perpetual scaremongering.
JanetP367
12th Feb 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
Been on the patches for years, no problems & worked really well. Now suddenly can't get hold of them & having to use a daily gel, which is not as effective. Not a lot of empathy from male GPs. This situation is just not good enough.
JenniferA55
12th Feb 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
It took a long time of trying to find the right HRT for me. Now I can't get hold of it. I'm furious. The replacement offered is complicated (daily spray and tablet). I will try to source privately from abroad.
PennyW68
12th Feb 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
It’s an absolute disgrace, ive been a bit luckier than some that up to now have been able to get some gel, not as good as my regular patches though, someone please get a grip!,
DebH3
12th Feb 2020
1
Thanks for voting!
I am currently sitting in agony as I have run out of evorel conti patches. Please help
Mary Lincoln
12th Feb 2020
2
Thanks for voting!
I was on HRT for 15yrs in the 70s. Never had any trouble getting them. Helped with my joint pains ,also early menopause. Its been 30yrs or more since they were stopped. I have never felt as well since stopping,until l was told that CBD oil might help. I have been taking it just over a week. I feel like I did on HRT ,it has really helped with the joint pains. Not everyone can take it, depending on what medication you are on, well worth a try. Seek GPS advice.

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