This information is posted on Dr. Hertoghe's website:

There is some hesitancy among physicians to give estrone, because a few reports have suggested that estrone could be carcinogenic. Estriol, on the contrary, has better press .Many voices say estrogen should be added to every female hormone treatment because several, but not all, studies have reported it to produce protective effects against breast cancer. If a physician decides with his female patient for estriol supplementation, the best way seems not to take estriol transdermally as it is hardly or not absorbed through the skin, but orally or vaginally. My experience is with the oral form. It is in this form hardly, if ever metabolized in the liver. The average dose is 2 mg/day. Estriol should be given the same days of the menstrual cycle or month as the estradiol gel. Never give estriol alone as one study showed that it may highly increase the risk of endometrial cancer if no progesterone is supplied.

However, in his book, The Hormone Solution, he says oral estrogen should be avoided as that puts too much stress on the liver, and that estrogen should be taken either as a cream, patches, or vaginally. Of course, that book was written more than a decade ago, and things change...I have been on E cream (Oestrogel) for several years, take the maximum prescribe dosage (two pumps a day applied on thighs or abdomen), but cannot say it's done much for me...I wonder if oral estrogen would be preferable...? Has anyone here successfully taken estrogen? If so, how (cream, patches, pills...)?

26 Replies

  • I have oral estriol and estradiol (among others) adding up to a total of 2mg- creams didn't work at all, although intravaginal estriol was great for stopping symptoms of vaginal atrophy very fast.

    What type of oestrogen is in your cream. He says use estradiol as a cream/gel and estriol orally.

  • The cream is called Oestrogel and contains estradiol 0.06% gel. I have not found it effective, and was wondering if I should discuss estriol with my doctor.

  • thecat,

    I take Oestrogen (2.5g estradiol) -2 pumps daily applied to inner thighs, shoulders, abdomen, etc & Utrogestan 100mg 25 days out of a 28 day cycle. I am menopausal and started HRT about 8 weeks ago to improve low mood and volatile emotions.

    My oestrogen & progesterone were none existent and testosterone very high. Due to MTHFR issues & iron overload my endo said transdermal was the only way as deemed my liver has enough to put up with ! ! .. It has worked extremely well.

    You say you are on the maximum dose but on my canister it says 2-4 measures so 2.5-5.0g daily. Maybe you need a dose increase ? ? ....

    I read progesterone should be supplemented with Oestrogel to encourage a shedding of the womb lining so prevent a thickening which may contain cancer cells. I have not bled since being on HRT but I guess it is early days.

    Everything I read says transdermal (or patches) is better when there are so many other health issues to consider as (unbalanced) hypothyroidism puts a strain on the liver as it is (hence many on the forum having elevated liver enzymes.)

    Do you supplement progesterone ? ? ...

  • Yes, I am on Utrogestan 200 mg from day 15-25 of cycle, and Oestrogel (two pumps) from day 5-25. When prescribed these, three years ago, I was still having regular periods. They have been acting up lately, coming more irregularly, but they still come...I remember my doctor saying that once menopausal, you take both 25 days a month.

    I will look for more info on the manufacturer's website.

  • tc,

    I take the gel every day as directed by endo but the instructions leaflet says differently. I have googled & there appears to be different protocols, probably depending on menopausal state.

    Maybe you need a different protocol.

  • Yes, I am seeing my hormone doctor in early August...and plan to raise it then. Thanks for your input, very valuable!

  • Hi, sorry to crash this, but o had the tabs and gel.. I can finally sleep, but I can't recall her telling me that I had to stop.. I have had no periods for 2 yrs ... I have tried to google this but it seems to give different regimes on how to take.. I've only had it for a month and don't see her til Sept at Barts.. Have you ever heard of having the tabs all the time no break? Again so sorry to crash a thread with a? X😊

  • Scorpio,

    If you refer to Utrogestan, no I haven't heard of anyone taking them continuously.

    I thought a break was imperative to give the body a chance to bleed, offering opportunity to shed the womb lining and discouraging cancer cells, etc.

    My progesterone level was so low my endo has told me to take pills on days 1-25 of each 28 day cycle. I only started HRT at the end of Feb and like you, am now enjoying better sleep ( except tonight ! ! ) ... .. I haven't had a proper period yet, only a very light show.

    You could repost your question for a more informed response from others ..... as I say I haven't been taking HRT very long and really knew nothing about it previous as was always so ( ignorantly) anti ! ! . .... until completely desperate ! ! ... ;o))))) .......


  • Thanks for this... I'd stopped having periods, so the last thing I want is periods... I'm going to have to check this out... Thanks hun x

  • I was told to take Utrogestan day 15-25 of cycle, and Estrogel day 5-25 of cycle, to imitate normal body function. When you don't take those hormones, you are supposed to have your period-

  • Thanks I'm going to have a look into this.. I go back in September so I will possibly do as you do untill then...

  • scorpio,

    Today I read on a forum that women who are post menopausal can take Utrogestan every day without a break but I can not find any official literature to support this.

  • hmmm see what b12 def does to you! I can't recall her telling me stop... I had my last period 2 years ago... I may email and find out... X. Let me know where you see posts re everyday users 😃

  • My doctor told me the same and that, once menopausal, I will take it daily.

  • It worked for my self diagnosed VA too, AotN.

  • This is the gel I use, and have for the past three years...although it says in the package leaflet that it should only be used by postmenopausal women:

  • Before supplementing hormones, I had asthma, migraine and DCIS - now, as far as I can tell, I don't - so the contraindications on the PIL don't always apply. However, I have also improved my B12 and D status.

  • I have estriol, estradiol, progesterone and DHEA and take it every day (post-menopause). Sadly, my pituitary seems not to want to spend its time making any hormones - low TSH, low sex hormones, low cortisol ... I tried various Chinese remedies and every Western herbal first, but nothing worked apart from replacing/supplementing hormones. I would have killed myself if I'd had to stay in the state I was in.

  • I use Wellsprings Twenty to One (Bioidentical Progesterone with added estrogen,) applied vaginally, it healed and turned round my my VA problems straight away, I was amazed.

  • Sorry to crash what does va mean.


  • Thankyou. Feel silly. I am 16 months since last period gone through he'll. GPS up and then lower thyroid meds this is making me more insane than menopause. Taking estrogen tablet in vagina as I'm terribly incontinent sorry very embarrassed at 48. Feel ver old. And upset.

  • kjc,

    Is the oestrogen helping ?

    Did GP test sex hormones in order to prescribe oestrogen ? Many members are oestrogen dominent meaning they would need progesterone to be prescribed.

    Replacing these missing hormones seems to help members with VA. I take HRT for low mood & hot flushes and the difference is truely amazing.

  • Thanks for your reply at 3.49 am shouldn't you be asleep. Not sleeping terrible tinnitus. Have a horrible meeting with child's school tomorrow that's playing on my mind. Can I talk to you tomorrow about hormone stuff as I'm so confused as to what is wrong with me is it thyroid or is it hormones. Going round the bend.

  • Just a thought kjc1tisdell, you mentioned tinnitus, there is a connection of B12 Deficicency with tinnitus. Have you been checked for B12 Deficiency. If you have Low thyroid it can often run alongside, almost identical symptoms to Low thyroid (Hypothyroidism.)

  • As Radd replied :) VA is worse than dry vagina, I have had both, but not anymore. :)

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