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Estrace (vaginal) users - how long do you plan

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  • Estrace (vaginal) users - how long do you plan

    to keep taking it?

    I just began Estrace but don't want to stay on it very long as I'm afraid of the possible side effects. My PFD therapist suggested I stay on it "forever" as its helping me so much but I'd like to be on it as short a time as possible.

  • #2

    I've been on Vagifem and think it is about the same thing as Estrace. It provides estrogen to the vagina. I understand a negligible amount is absorbed and is even prescribed to breast cancer survivors - it is that safe. I plan on staying on it for at least 5 years along with my HRT. Some women get vaginal symptoms after menopause and I hope this will prevent that from happening. I feel so much better since being on HRT and Vagifem along with Amitripyline. I would stay on any of the medications I am taking if they keep me from feeling the pain I used to feel.


    • #3
      ***I have used premarin cream for over 10 years. It is MUCH stronger than estrace cream. Any time I tried to stop I had vaginal dryness and pain return. I recently switched to vagifem ( it is really the same as estrace only in pill form ) because it is estradiol-the natural estrogen the body makes. I plan on staying on vaginal estrogen the rest of my life. I am on regular HRT too. When I stop HRT I will continue the vaginal form. I think you are very safe with the estrace cream. Unless you are bothered by an ingredient in the cream, I would not be concerned with long-term effects. Are you using any kind of progesterone? Or do you still get a period? Long ago when I started the cream I was not getting a period often and I was concerned about uterine buildup-but my Dr said the cream was not strong enough to cause a buildup. I'm not sure about that though-so that would be my only concern if you are not bleeding naturally or on a progesterone. Hope this helps!
      Premature ovarian faliure 1996-age 39
      Put on ortho novum 7/7/7 and premarin cream
      Began HRT Feb 2006
      Current meds:
      Estrace oral: 0.5 twice a day
      Prometrium 100mg bedtime
      premarin cream for vulva
      Aciphex 20mg
      diflucan monthly-stopped this July 2007-fingers crossed!!
      gabapentin 900mg-so far


      • #4
        I'm way into post menopause (63) so I don't think I need the progesterone.


        • #5

          If you do not have a uterus you do not need progesterone. The reason they give progesterone is to prevent endometrial build up and possible endometrial cancer. Actually, the number of endometrial cancers is pretty small. Progesterone is a pregnancy hormone and is found in very low levels in healthy, young, non pregnant women who are cycling.
          Why are you so concerned about staying on either systemic or vaginal estrogen? Do you have a genetic history of breast cancer? If you do then be assured as Frannie mentioned they give vaginal estrogen to cancer patients.
          If you are concerned because you think estrogen causes breast cancer, be assured again; studies show that for long time estrogen use the breast cancer rate showed up as either: 1%, no difference at all, slightly less cancer in estrogen users than non hormone users. These results depended on the various studies. Notice these studies were estrogen only users, not progesterone or testosterone added users.
          The nurses study with Premarin and Provera together in a pill called Prempo was halted due to the jump in breast cancer rate among users. However the Premarin only group did not show this jump.
          The recent screaming headlines regarding a dip in breast cancer due to women going off of hormones depends on how you reason the facts. The study was done by a group of people who tallied the number of hormone RX for a period of time, against the number of breast cancers for the same time and concluded they might be related. Notice they did not look at the type of hormones (Premarin, natural estrogen, type of delivery system, was it taken with a progestin, if so which type?), nor did they seperate out the types of breast cancer (was it estrogen, progestin, ductal) for types. Not all breast cancer is hormone dependent.
          I could take a count of how much peanut butter they ate in Seattle, compare it to the number of crimes that took place and suggest a correlation.
          If you have a genetic history of breast cancer, then you must make this decision for yourself. But also consider if its genetic, you would have a higher probablility of cancer on or off the estrogen.
          It also strikes me as weird that as you age and your natural estrogen levels decline the cancer rate increases? I have yet to hear a good explination of that?


          Meds: Melatonin 3mg @ bedtime if needed. Estrogen 1.5 mg troche and 0.1 mg Estrace cream.
          Diagnosis: IC, PFD (both in remission)


          • #6
            I use Estrace vag. cream and plan to continue to use it as long as I need it (forever, if necessary). Sami says it best about the BC risk. Estrace has greatly reduced my IC symptoms and I don't think I could do without it.