I am a huge supporter of estrogen. There are certain times when taking prescribed estrogen can really help women feel better. The biggest and most well-known time is obviously menopause. As a woman’s natural production of estrogen declines, taking a small amount of estrogen every day can mean the difference between feeling good and feeling bad.
Then sometimes there are certain women who just don’t produce enough estrogen. These women they find that in their teenage years they had strange symptoms like abnormal periods, frequent yeast infections, or recurring bladder infections, and as they enter their 20’s and 30’s they just never really feel “right.” They’re tired, foggy-headed, or have problems with painful intercourse. Maybe they even experience hot flashes, but doctors tell them it’s not possible because of their age. Prescribing these women a small amount of estrogen could really improve their quality of life.
And then there are women who have had a surgery that affected their estrogen levels. Maybe an ovary had to be taken out, or maybe their uterus was removed (partial hysterectomy) and a few years later the ovaries shut down. Or maybe they had a total hysterectomy and the ovaries were taken as well. These women will experience “surgical menopause” meaning they’re in menopause, but it’s due to a surgical procedure. These women will need to take estrogen in order to prevent symptoms like hot flashes and irritability.
Taking estrogen is such an easy solution to a variety of issues. I’m always pleased when patients report back telling me how good they feel. And sometimes women don’t even realize how poorly they were feeling until their estrogen starts working and they experience feeling good. Estrogen truly is an important part of a woman’s health.
In next week’s blog we are going to talk about some recent research about the benefits of taking estrogen. Don’t forget to check back!