Are you struggling with vaginal dryness, irritation and maybe even painful intimacy?
Menopause causes changes in vaginal tissue that make intimacy uncomfortable. One study showed 44% of menopausal women saying intimacy was painful, that’s called dyspareunia. Even women who weren’t sexually active complained of vaginal dryness, itching and irritation after menopause.
Last Thursday, one of my patents complained of what she bluntly called, “. . . the Sahara Desert between my legs.” Not coincidentally, I was counseling that patient about her prescription for estriol to treat vaginal atrophy. The fact that no one talks about it doesn’t make it less of an issue.
In my last post, I went over some FDA approved estradiol products that reverse vaginal menopause symptoms. Another option, vaginal Estriol, also called E3, is available in the U.S. from compounding pharmacies.
Estriol is one of the weakest bio-identical estrogens, exactly the same as an estrogen your body makes. Estriol has been prescribed as Ovestin® oral tablets or vaginal cream to treat vaginal menopause symptoms in Europe, Australia and the U.K. For over 20 years.
In the U.S., a compounding pharmacist can make up estriol prescribed by your doctor in a vaginal suppository, troche or cream. Because it’s not FDA approved, estriol is covered by only a few insurance companies. You’ll pay around $50 to $70 for a vaginal estriol prescription, but that’s at least $100 less than most of the commercially available vaginal products.
Estriol cream or suppositories are inserted vaginally once a day at bedtime, every night for a couple of weeks. After that, the dose is cut back to 2-3 times weekly. This regimen helps to build up vaginal tissue and reverse vaginal atrophy. Less frequent estriol doses help maintain that healthy vaginal tissue.
Since Estriol is a weaker estrogen, it’s not used as often by itself for hot flashes, but it can really help with vaginal issues. Talk with your doctor about the possibility of getting a prescription for estriol from a specialty compounding pharmacy.
There are some promising clinical trials going on with vaginal DHEA that I’ll tell you about in my next video, Part 3 in this series on treatment of vaginal menopause symptoms. To stay informed about when I upload new videos, subscribe to my channel on YouTube.
Join me for hormone updates. I have lots more useful, practical information about the best treatments for all your menopause symptoms.
Thanks for watching and I’ll talk with you again soon.