Hormone replacement therapy, or HRT, is a form of medication often used to treat the symptoms of menopause. According to the National Institute on Aging, menopause is the point in a female’s life twelve months after she has had her last period. The time leading up to menopause, often called perimenopause, is a transition stage when levels of sex hormones, namely estrogen and progesterone, begin to fall. For approximately eighty-five percent of menopausal females, that decline results in symptoms such as vaginal dryness, shifting moods, and hot flashes, or an abrupt feeling of warmth typically in the upper body. HRT replenishes a person’s sex hormones, and though there are many methods of HRT, people most commonly take a pill that contains either estrogen only or both estrogen and progesterone. HRT has evolved scientifically but has at times resulted in controversy over potential side effects. Despite historical controversy, as of 2024, researchers recognize that with careful consideration of an individual's health conditions and history, HRT can be an effective treatment for menopausal symptoms.