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Vaginal Dryness
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Vaginal Dryness

Having a terrible time with vaginal dryness.  OTC products haven't worked.  Any suggestions?  I was dx with Stage 1a ovarian cancer last July.  I am 37 so the surgery left my body in a hormonal mess since menopause was brought on so abruptly.  Also, are soy products considered safe with ovarian cancer dx?  Thanks for your input!!!
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Just wanted to tell you that if you get into Hystersisters.com they have a forum for women who have had cancer and hysterectomys who can't take hormones. There may be information there that can help you. Good Luck....
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I hear you!!!!!  I was dx'd with stage 1A in 2000....I was lucky to be able to hold onto my right ovary until 2004, and then boom - instant menopause!!!!!  UGH......they made a mistake with me at first and allowed me to take HRT (and it the estrogen I was on is considered to be bio-identical)...it helped some, but not enough...well I developed cysts and they believe that it could be related to the estrogen, so I was yanked off.  I am not allowed to take any HRT, not even the over the counter stuff because they "mimic" estrogen.  No soy or black cohash for me, but, every doctor is different in their beliefs.

What does your GYN/Oncologist suggest???
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Thanks for your comments.  I figured there wasn't an easy answer to this.  My gyn/onc is on vacation but his nurse thought he might ok a topical cream.  I still haven't heard back.  I just wondered if anyone had used a cream or other remedy.  nyc lady...when you developed the cysts...what were your symptoms...how were they found?  Thanks again!!!!
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Hi, I am wondering if your doctor is going to recommend  Estrace, a vaginal cream with bioidentical estrogen in it. It is considered to be Non-systemic, therefore, it would not have an amount of estrogen in it that would get into the rest of the body, but it would help keep the vaginal tissues supple and could help you from having vaginal atrophy. A little bit of testosterone (you really just need a little) also helps regarding this, plus it helps with libido, mental clarity, chemical sensitivities, and of all things, clumsiness!

Not all estrogens are created equal and when you hear of bioidentical hormones you know that they are made to act exactly the same in the body as the hormones we make or made as the case may be. You can google a product to see if it is bioidentical, or check it out through other sources. Most sythentic estrogens are made from pregnant horses urine, but that is not always the case. There is one estrogen that is made from soy, I think, but the way it is synthesized in the lab it acts as a synthetic hormone in the system even though upon first glance it seems as if it would be bioidentical. Having said all that, your body is going to make estrone, a form of estrogen, made from the fat in your system (estrone is a by product)  if it is not being produced in the ovaries and this is a strong form of estrogen. Because of that, doctors who deal in the bioidentical hormones usually would not recommend hormonal treatment unless they also recommended Bioidentical Progesterone (NOT Synthetic Progestin..the two are often confused, but many women without a uterus take Progesterone for brain/bone health) so that your system can stay in balance. That is the critical thing....Balance....

I know it was an imbalance in my system (for years...without hormones) with way too much estrogen in my system that got me into trouble years ago with an initial dx of Ovarian cancer cells found in a cyst...and near cervical cancer prior to that.  In my case, no more cancer was found, but I certainly have a whole new respect for the power of hormones, but what I have learned through the years is that one can get benefits from certain hormones, too, but you really have to educate yourself and get as much knowledge as possible so that you can look at the whole picture.

Whether or not you consider taking hormones, please look at the book by Christianne Northrup, MD, "The Wisdom of Menopause"....it is an awesome book (a bit overwhelming due to all of the information) but you will get a clear understanding of hormonal interactions in the system, whether you have your own hormones or whether you decide to supplement as well as questions to ask the doctor should you be told you should not supplement. Even so, Notrhrup offers many suggestions to help combat things such as vaginal dryness, etc....and she does a nice job of explaining the whole soy/black cohosh thing and the fact that some products out there do mimic estrogen as Pam said, but also the difference between the ones that some people take and the ones that you sometimes get whether you like it or not (such as the types of estrogens in our Shampoos...)

Take care....I know this is a huge topic and sometimes a controversial one. I am not a doctor, (I work in Mental Health), and I through my own experience, I have had to get interested in this topic over the past 7 years...

Mary
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Thanks so much for the info. in your post!  I have heard of the bioidentical hormones and you're so right it is quite overwhelming to figure out how it all fits in with my dx and symptoms.  I have tried OTC products (Replens) and they really helping.   I am going to get that book.  I still haven't heard back from my dr. but I definitely don't want to take anything that is going cause more harm than good!  Thanks again!
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