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Vaginal estrogen?

PunyaHealth Experts -

PunyaHealth Experts

Published on 12 Jul 2020

Vaginal estrogen

Is it safe to use vaginal estrogen for postmenopausal Women?

Overview

It has been seen that Hormone Replacement Therapy is linked with higher risks of cancers and cardiovascular diseases. A recent study demonstrates no increase in risk for women using vaginal estrogen for any postmenopausal symptoms.

There is a marked difference between systematic estrogen replacement and vaginal estrogen. The low dose topical estrogen applied to the vagina will not increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, blood clots, breast cancer, endometrial cancer, osteoporosis, etc. as per the new study.

Menopause and its Symptoms

The absence of a menstrual period after a certain age of a woman is defined as menopause. After 12 months of menopause, the circulating estrogen starts decreasing in the body.

Menopausal symptoms are:

 Hot flashes

 Night sweats

 Mood swings

Usually, doctors treat these symptoms with systemic hormone replacement therapy that includes pills and patches. There are certain benefits as well as risk factors for women going through the therapy.

Genitourinary Syndrome (GSM)

Estradiol, a form of estrogen, is responsible for several other menopausal symptoms. After menopause, when the circulating estradiol starts decreasing, the blood flow to the urinary tract and the genitals also decreases. Due to this, the vulva, vagina, and urethra start getting thinner and drier. This condition is seen more in women above 65 known as a genitourinary syndrome (GSM).

Topical or vaginal estrogen can be used to treat this condition successfully.

The symptoms of GSM:

1.               The genital symptoms

The symptoms that are related to the genitals are dryness, burning sensation, and irritation.

2.               The urinary tract symptoms

The symptoms are related to the urinary tract. They are urgency, recurring urinary tract infections, and dysuria.

Doctors treat the above symptoms of GSM with topical estrogen. It helps in thickening the skin within a few days of the application without being transferred to the bloodstream.

Vaginal Estrogen treatments

 Vaginal creams that can be applied during bedtime.

 Suppositories that can be inserted into the vagina during bedtime.

 A vaginal ring that can be inserted into the vagina which will release a small amount of estrogen daily. It can be done with the help of a provider every three months.

Who should avoid using Vaginal Estrogen?

Women who are suffering from breast cancer or have gone through any heart ailment like stroke need to avoid vaginal estrogen.

Low doses of vaginal estrogens help to keep the vaginal tissues healthy and elastic. It is also beneficial to the normal microbiome of the vagina, avoiding urinary tract infections.