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The International Hormone Society

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Consensus # 10 The application of hormone therapy by multiple medical specialties.

April 24, 2007

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After an extensive literature review and discussions with physicians from all over the world who are well versed in treating patients with endocrine abnormalities, we, the Consensus Group of Experts of the International Hormone Society, think there is enough clinical and theoretical evidence to expand the use of hormone treatments to other medical specialties than endocrinology.

The medical specialties that should utilize hormone therapies in the treatment of patients


There is no scientific evidence to support the position that endocrine treatments should be exclusively or mainly provided by sanctioned endocrinologists.  In fact, limiting hormone treatments to certified endocrinologists may adversely affect the health of patients.    As hormones are crucial for the functioning of all cells, tissues and organ systems, treating patients with hormones should be the domain of all disciplines including general medicine, surgery, psychiatry and even ophthalmology.   

Additionally, due to the limited number of endocrinologists and the prediction of further shortages, the long wait to see an endocrinologist will be exacerbated.  This makes it even more imperative that all physicians be competent and empowered to treat patients with hormone therapies.  

Requirements for treating hormone deficiencies or excesses outside the field of endocrinology

1.    The patient must have at least one hormone deficiency or excess that necessitates treatment.  
2.    The physician must be competent and experienced in hormone therapy treatments.  

The assessment of physician competence in hormone therapy treatments can be determined by several of the following methods:

  1. Additional training in treating hormone deficiencies with qualified physicians, via a preceptorship or fellowship, verified by a certificate, diploma or written acknowledgement.   
  2. Attendance at seminars and conferences on hormone therapy treatments, verified by certificates, CME credits, etc.
  3. Several years of experience in treating patients with hormone therapies, verified by examining the medical records of the patients treated  
  4. Having successfully passed a written or oral exam in endocrinology/hormone therapies
  5. Experience as a lecturer or speaker at several conferences and seminars
  6. Having publications in the field of endocrinology

Physician competence should be demonstrated in more than one of the above-mentioned ways.  Inadequately trained physicians should not attempt to treat hormone-related conditions.

The position of traditional endocrinologists:  Most endocrinologists specialize in the management of diabetes and at times thyroid and adrenal problems.   As a rule, endocrinologists do not have extensive experience utilizing other hormone therapies.  Gynecologists and primary care physicians will generally initiate female hormone replacement, while urologists or primary care physicians treat testosterone deficiencies in men.  Even though it is limited, the use of hormone interventions by other specialties is already a reality.  Besides expanding the use of hormone therapies to include other medical disciplines, we recommend that endocrinologists receive additional training in providing hormone treatments that are less familiar to them. In this way they would be able to assist physicians from other disciplines in providing more effective treatments of hormone deficiencies.  The actual role of an endocrinologist should be enriched to extend beyond the management of diabetes and thyroid/adrenal issues to the role of being an expert advisor on all hormone therapies.

Conclusion:  As hormone deficiencies or excesses often have serious adverse effects on patientsÂ’ quality of life, health, and possibly lifespan, they should be treated as soon as possible, yet as safely as possible.  To ensure treatment, patients should have the option of being treated by the physicians they consult, assuming the physicians are competent in treating the patientsÂ’ conditions.  Thus, all medical specialties should include relevant hormone therapies in their training and in the services offered.  To ensure safety and competence, evidence-based seminars, training, preceptorships, fellowships and internet education should be organized by medical societies and universities, along with the publication of modified textbooks and hormone therapy handbooks.  

References

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46 signatures for this petition
 
1 to 10

04/27/2017
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12/21/2014
Marianne Kuokkanen
Finland
(no comment)
04/11/2014
Roselle Saba
United States
I support this petition because it can affect people struggling with life threatening conditions requiring quicker diagnosises and treatments paths. This is the case in my situation and my story. I am being treated now, but it has been a long road. We remain hopeful for my future. Please support this petition it could save lifes.
04/11/2014
Roselle Saba
United States
I support this petition because it can affect people struggling with life threatening conditions requiring quicker diagnosises and treatments paths. This is the case in my situation and my story. I am being treated now, but it has been a long road. We remain hopeful for my future. Please support this petition it could save lifes.
03/09/2014
Deirdre Ryan
Australia
This is ESSENTIAL as General Practitioners are the "front line" in diagnosing/treating patients. The Endocrine System is part of so many areas of medicine - its ESSENTIAL that Doctors be aware of the effects of Endocrinology as it affects their areas of the Modern Medical world-which is such a fragmented one already!
04/30/2011
Giselle Wildman, D.O.
United States
There is an epidemic of need for both:1) patients who suffer greatly and 2) well trained physicians who are able to diagnose and treat this properly.
04/04/2011
Valerie Kavanagh
Ireland
Natural thryoid and complimentary treatment, based on symptoms, NOT lab work. WE live a half-life and are expected to carry on...IM TIRED !!!!!!!!!!!! BRING CHOICES TO IRELAND
04/04/2011
Valerie Kavanagh
Ireland
Natural thryoid and complimentary treatment, based on symptoms, NOT lab work. WE live a half-life and are expected to carry on...IM TIRED !!!!!!!!!!!! BRING CHOICES TO IRELAND
10/10/2010
Dustin Leonard
United States
(no comment)

 

 

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