Steroid Estrogen - Steroid Essay Example

Estrogen belongs to a group of steroid compounds - Steroid Estrogen introduction. They are the primary sex hormones found in females. However, both men and women possess the estrogen hormone (Wikipedia). In a general idea, estrogen aids in the formation of secondary sexual characteristics such as the breast tissue for women. Estrogen is primarily produced in the follicles developing within the ovaries, the corpus luteum, and the placenta (Wikipedia). Lesser amounts of estrogens can be found in the liver, adrenal glands, and the breasts.

This particular estrogen reserves are particularly beneficial to post-menopausal women. Found in the body are three naturally occurring forms of estrogen: estradiol, estriol, and estrone (Wikipedia). Because estrogens are a steroid hormones, they easily diffuse across the cell membrane. In the cell, they interact with the estrogen receptors. There are a host of functions that the estrogens undertake. They include structural functions such as the formation of secondary sexual characteristics, protein synthesis, coagulation, increase of blood platelet stickiness (Wikipedia).

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Estrogen can also be prescribed by a doctor to treat certain medical problems. It is most often prescribed for women to treat hot flashes associated with the onset of menopause (Medline). Estrogen is most effective when consumption is began within five years of beginning menopause. It is an oral tablet that is consumed daily (Medline). It helps to lower the risk of fractures associated with bone density loss. However, the time limit as to its safety time line to begin the estrogen treatment is not to exceed ten years past the start of menopause (Estrogen).

But within, the first five it is most effective in combating effects or possibilities of osteoporosis (Estrogen). There are reports showing other positive effects of estrogen regiments. One report is the effect of estrogen on the cardiovascular system. It has the potential to increase the HDL cholesterol, the “good” cholesterol, while at the same time reducing the LDL cholesterol, the “bad” cholesterol (Estrogen).

Estrogen also helps to regulate the vasoreactivity of older women (Estrogen). Side effects of using estrogen are the increased risk of endometrial cancer from one in one thousand to six in one thousand (Estrogen). This is often treated with the unfortunate hysterectomy procedure. However, reports on the effects of estrogen are still under review. For one, studies have typically been conducted using healthier women of higher socio-economic classes.

Another overlooked detail is the fact that it may take up to ten years of estrogen use before any significant changes in a woman’s cardiovascular system can be directly linked to the use of estrogen (Estrogen). There are other negative side effects that are sometimes forgotten about. For example, the risk of gallstones is doubled by the use of estrogen. However, a few major positive details stemming from estrogen use are the lower incidence rate of Alzheimer’s and the slowing of the loss of collagen from skin cells (Estrogen).

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