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Are estrogen gels, creams, and sprays safer than other types of estrogen for menopause symptoms?

ANSWER

Estrogen gels, creams, and sprays have not been well-studied. While they could be safer than oral estrogen, experts aren't sure. So assume that they pose the same slight risk of serious conditions, like cancer and stroke. One potential problem with using this type of estrogen treatment is that the gel, cream, or spray can rub or wash off before it's been fully absorbed. Always apply it after you bathe or shower. And make sure you let it dry before you put on clothes.

SOURCES:

ACP Medicine web site: "Menopause."

Canonico M et al, , Feb. 20, 2007; vol 115: pp 840-845. Circulation

MedicineNet web site: "Hormone Creams: Safe and Effective?"

National Cancer Institute web site: "How to Deal with Surgical Menopause."

National Institutes of Health web site: "Facts About Menopausal Hormone Therapy."

National Institutes of Health Medline Plus web site: "Estrogen," "Estrogen Vaginal," "Estradiol Topical," "Estradiol Transdermal."

  Practice Committee of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, , November 2006; vol 86: pp S75-S88. Fertility and Sterility

National Women's Health information Center: "Menopause and Menopause Treatments." WebMD Medical Reference: "Estrogen Replacement Therapy," "Low Dose Estrogen for Dryness and Atrophy."

Reviewed by Neha Pathak on May 29, 2017

SOURCES:

ACP Medicine web site: "Menopause."

Canonico M et al, , Feb. 20, 2007; vol 115: pp 840-845. Circulation

MedicineNet web site: "Hormone Creams: Safe and Effective?"

National Cancer Institute web site: "How to Deal with Surgical Menopause."

National Institutes of Health web site: "Facts About Menopausal Hormone Therapy."

National Institutes of Health Medline Plus web site: "Estrogen," "Estrogen Vaginal," "Estradiol Topical," "Estradiol Transdermal."

  Practice Committee of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, , November 2006; vol 86: pp S75-S88. Fertility and Sterility

National Women's Health information Center: "Menopause and Menopause Treatments." WebMD Medical Reference: "Estrogen Replacement Therapy," "Low Dose Estrogen for Dryness and Atrophy."

Reviewed by Neha Pathak on May 29, 2017

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Can someone get estrogen from me if I use an estrogen cream, spray, or gel?

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