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Progesterone cream during perimenopause

(11 Posts)
Butterbean17 Mon 12-Mar-18 14:44:56

How do you use progesterone cream?
My estrogen levels are still high (I’m 41) so I’ve been advised to take progesterone tablets or cream.
I’ve bought the cream. How did you use it to specifically help with perimenopause symptoms (anxiety, sadness, brain fog)?
Should I apply it every day or just certainly days of the month?
I get terribly down and anxious for the first 2-3 weeks of my cycle (not leaving much room for the good times!). So I’m really hoping this progesterone works. I’ve been reading great things about it so I’m trying to be hopeful.

PollyPerky Mon 12-Mar-18 15:46:12

What kind of specialist did you see and why did they suggest this?
What did you buy? Is it on prescription?

Butterbean17 Tue 13-Mar-18 04:25:53

It was a gynecologist that I saw in Dubai where I live. I bought Source natural progesterone cream from a pharmacy. I was prescribed tablets but she said if I could find the cream (it is often unavailable here) then I should use that.

Butterbean17 Tue 13-Mar-18 04:27:58

She did a blood test and also an ultrasound of my ovaries.

PollyPerky Tue 13-Mar-18 08:47:25

This is not a common way to to treat peri in the UK.

The reason is that normally, we'd not have progesterone in our bodies anyway except for the 10 days or so after ovulation .
The symptoms of peri are caused by lack of estrogen due to non-ovulatory cycles.

What are you hoping to improve with progesterone?

For most women, progesterone is the 'downer' hormone which causes tiredness, mood swings, feeling low. Adding more only makes this worse. In combined systemic HRT, it's the progesterone part that most women hate because they get all the PMS symptoms.

The only women I've known who were prescribed progesterone during peri had erratic bleeding (spotting) and used the mini Pill (POP) Norethisterone to help control their cycles and stop the spotting.

There is also a lot of argument over whether progesterone cream can actually be absorbed and used in the body through a cream.

Be interesting to see how you feel on it.

Butterbean17 Tue 13-Mar-18 13:30:54

I think it’s because my estrogen is still very high which I’ve heard can be the cause of lots of peri symptoms - estrogen dominance.
Low progesterone can cause anxiety too. I’ve heard of a lot of people who have had relief from using progesterone cream.
My gynecologist said it was a calming hormone.
I suppose it depends on getting the balance right.
We shall see but I have to be hopeful.

PollyPerky Tue 13-Mar-18 13:51:17

There is no such thing as estrogen dominance. This has been discussed loads of times on meno forums. It was a marketing ploy by Dr John Lee (now deceased) to try to sell progesterone cream. If you google estrogen dominance there is stuff online .

When women use HRT it's the extra estrogen that makes them feel good. The progesterone is a PITA to be honest as it's what gives us PMS, moods, feeling tired. Yes it can be sedating, but you would need huge amounts like the amount women have when pregnant.

I'm sorry- this is not a criticism of you but having been on meno forums for about 10 years I've read this so often and I'm far from the only one pointing this out. Go to Menopause Matters website /forum and ask there too if you want further info.

Butterbean17 Tue 13-Mar-18 14:22:51

Doesn’t the mirena coil ease symptoms of peri because it releases progesterone?

I just want to feel better. And I know I feel much better after ovulation up until a couple of days after my period when I crash.
I’ve no idea what to do really.

PollyPerky Tue 13-Mar-18 14:45:48

The Mirena releases a synthetic progesterone into the uterus to 'offset' the action of estrogen which builds up the lining; you might know that if this carries on without progesterone it overgrows and can lead to cancerous changes.
A tiny amount gets into the blood stream and some women who give up on the Mirena do so because they don't like the side effects which can be acne, weight gain and depression.

To be honest it doesn't sound as if you are in peri at all. 41 is very young for peri really nowadays. Average age of meno is 51 and although things can start to fall before then for a few years, the main and earliest sign is missed periods or longer /shorter cycles.

Did your dr test you on days 2-5 of a cycle over 2 separate months- your FSH levels and your estrogen levels?

How do you feel generally?

Butterbean17 Tue 13-Mar-18 14:55:43

Estrogen was 100
FSH 16.5

Butterbean17 Tue 13-Mar-18 15:03:48

I’m feeling anxious but don’t know if that’s due to general stress or hormones.
I get so low and then feel so much better after ovulation so was wondering what it was causing it as PMT is usually the other way around and ends at your period. That’s when my problems begin!
I’m taking St. John’s wort to see if that helps.
I certainly don’t want to take progesterone if it’s only going to make me worse!
I’ve heard some women on this forum saying it changed their life tough!!

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