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An article in the New York Times titled "Natural Remedies for Hot Flashes" discusses the use of progesterone creams for symptoms stemming from menopause. Hot flashes, weight gain, memory loss, fatigue, and irritability are often associated when women begin menopause.For some, these symptoms are manageable, but others will need more care, and more women are turning to alternatives. The article states:

"Gynecologists estimate that a third of women seeking treatment for menopausal symptoms are on conventional prescription hormones. Another third are on prescription bio-identical therapy. (Bio-identical hormones are synthesized compounds that mimic the molecular structure of human hormones and are derived from plants). The remaining third either tough it out, are not bothered by symptoms or are searching for over-the-counter therapies, including natural supplements and topical creams. They may try, for example, a supplement of phytoestrogens derived from soy and red clover, a low-dose progesterone cream, or swear by black cohosh capsules."

While these therapies do help with symptoms, Chinese medicine practitioners believe that in order to treat these symptoms, we need to treat the root cause of the body's imbalance. Using diagnostic techniques (such as checking the pulse, looking at the tongue, and interviewing the patient), help us treat according to individual patient diagnosis. By using acupuncture points according to this diagnosis, we treat the reason the symptoms are occurring instead of masking them.

Acupuncture treatments for menopause related symptoms will involve weekly treatments for 4-6 weeks, and patients will often be prescribed herbal remedies (also according to diagnosis). There are often Western herbs that practitioners use in the herbal formulas, and it is important to tell your practitioner if you are using an estrogen patch, progesterone creams, or any other remedies prescribed by an MD or self-prescribed.