Breastfeeding and Postpartum Depression

by Jessica
(Wisconsin)

Hi Wray,

For some reason I cannot add comments to my existing page...so feel free to post your response here or there..whichever you think that is better for others to reference, read & learn.

I just wanted to give you an update, because things have changed since I last posted. I mostly am feeling well, so thank god for that. Since I've upped my progesterone dose to 400mg cream in the am, 200 mg cream in the pm, and 400mg pill in the pm I am now sleeping much better. I do think I'm definitely not in a stage of constant estrogen dominance anymore, as my baby weight is melting off and I am sleeping better. But I still am having some pretty substantial issues and am wondering your thoughts. I'm having pretty bad esophageal contractions...where it feels like something is stuck in my esophagus at all times. I initially thought it was acid reflux, which is something I've never had even when pregnant, but realized it's more of a constricting of the esophagus (which in looking at the forums, see that other women seem to have as well when hormones get out of whack). I'm also having mild to moderate hot flashes during the day and brain fog/dizzines. Do you think I need even more progesterone than the 600 daily cream + 400 daily oral than I'm already taking? I just can't believe the estrogen dominance is that strong, especially considering estrogen drops so much after birth. I've been at this current dose since Tuesday June 18th. Or do you think I should wait it out at this current dose for a few more days to see if side effects subside?

Also, I'm curious as to your thoughts on where you apply the cream? I've been applying it to my upper thighs mostly since my aunt told me to avoid having it come into contact with my husband & sons, and haven't really had any immediate negative side effects. But last night I changed it up and applied it to my stomach. I immediately starting having massive hot flashes, brain fog and dizzines. I'm going to go back to applying it to my thighs today, but am wondering why that might have happened? I'm wondering if there are just more blood vessels or something in my stomach (especially after my c-section), so the progesterone was stimulating more estrogen than when I put it on my thighs?

Thank you for being such an amazing resource...

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Jun 23, 2013
Breastfeeding and Postpartum Depression
by: Wray

Hi Jessica We do seem to be having a problem with our server site, as I've been unable to reply too! We have told them about it, so hopefully it ail be ironed out soon. I have answered both your queries under your titles on pnd and PND, so will post them both under those headings on this page, as it does seem to be working! Very pleased things are settling down, but not the oesophageal spasms! I've had those last year and they are awful, it does feel as if something is stuck.. I was under a lot of stress at the time. At one point I thought my chest was closing up and was off the pharmacist to get an asthma pump. But thought better of it and lathered on the progesterone. I used it hourly during the day and if I woke at night put on more. I also took a massive dose of vitamin D, about 300,000iu. Both Progesterone and Vitamin D relax smooth muscle, oestrogen constricts it, hence the spasm. It cleared up within a day by doing that. I don't understand why you were told to avoid areas which might come in contact with your husband, or sons. Progesterone is not a sex hormone and can be used safely by both sexes. We have many men using it mostly for stress, depression and to increase their libido. And young boys too. You might like to read our page on Traumatic Brain Injury to get an idea of how invaluable it is for men. They are far more likely than women to suffer a TBI, over 70% are in in fact men. I use the cream all over, top to toe, including my vagina at night only. So I'll take the normal amount I use and rub my hands together lightly, then brush them over which ever area I feel needs it, then rub it in. Not having used any on your stomach before, it could be why you reacted as you did. It is best to rotate areas, which I vaguely do! Although my face and neck get it morning and night, every day. Thanks for the kind words! Take care Wray

Jun 23, 2013
pnd
by: Wray

Hi Jessica I have replied to your other comments on your other page. These are some papers on acid reflux, one here. This paper agrees with you it's progesterone, see here. Caused they say by "a decrease in lower oesophageal sphincter pressure". Interesting, as this goes against the norm, which is oestrogen swells sphincters causing them to have difficulty closing. One reason women can suffer from incontinence. This paper says "The progressive rise in plasma progesterone has been suggested as a possible mediator of GER during pregnancy..... Thus, it is likely that if progesterone, with or without estrogen, contributes to GER in pregnancy, this effect takes place only at the high concentrations observed during this condition". Why not high oestrogens, why blame progesterone? This is the earliest reference I could find, a 1976 study, see here. It's possibly this study which everyone is using to 'assume' the cause is progesterone. The amount of progesterone you're using, if it's all topical is at least as high, if not higher than that during pregnancy. Don't forget it's the stimulatory affect progesterone has on oestrogen that causes the symptoms. But if you're worried why not stop all topical and only use the oral. Take care Wray

Jun 23, 2013
PND
by: Wray

Hi Jessica Oral progesterone is often given to help sleep. I can't make up my mind if it's affect is due to the progesterone, or to an overloaded liver! The liver has to metabolise it, I gave you that study on it's efficiency in doing this, leaving only about 4% according to the paper. I suggest stopping the oral and seeing if that helps. The cream is absorbed more effectively, and it has helped others with sleep problems. Are you taking enough vitamin D, as that also helps sleep, see here and here. Plus of course it makes progesterone more effective. Very difficult to advise on how much you would need to help sleep, try the 400mg/day divided as you're doing. And if that doesn't help, try 600mg/day, then 800mg/day. I don't feel you'll need as much as 800mg though. You might like to read this comment here. Admittedly she wasn't pregnant, but gives you an idea. You could consider taking about 4000mg inositol at night, it also helps sleep, reduces anxiety too. The amino acid glycine also helps sleep, see here. It's a calming neurotransmitter, also reducing anxiety. Oh dear I do wonder where these people get their info from. Oestrogen is a mitogen, progesterone inhibits mitosis, so how on earth can progesterone enlarge breasts or cause weight gain? See here, here and here. How does she explain away the fact that the foetus is bathed in progesterone for nine months, with over 400ng/ml being produced in the third trimester? The placenta produces it, the placenta is the interface between the foetus and the mother. I have often recommended to mothers with very young babies who won't sleep to put a pin head amount on their skin. I wish I'd know about it when my daughter was a baby. It helps with older children too. Take care Wray

Jun 23, 2013
pnd
by: Jessica

Thanks wray for all your feedback. I realize some of it may have been a bit confusing to consult on since my dosages were changing throughout the week when the server was having issues. I have been taking 800 mg of cream now for past three days and last night was able to sleep with NP oral dose..so that's good. The esophageal contractions stopped once I upped the cream from 600 to 800 too so another positive. I guess Dalton knew what she was doing when recommending 800 mg to prevent pnd. The only question I have is that right after applying the cream, even at a dose of 800 I still am getting hot flashes and brain fog/dizziness...indicating some estrogen dominance. Is this even possible after being just pregnant and having estrogen fall a ton after birth? I am just shocked I need so high of a dose and I am still having symptoms. Your thoughts on this appreciated.Also you mentioned in one of your notes to me that topical cream shouldn't make blood levels scary high as to not break out my aunt who is checking my blood levels foe nursing safety. Any idea what a dose of 800mg would put me at for a blood level?

Jun 24, 2013
Jessica
by: PND

Hi Wray,

Sorry to post again before waiting your response to my last post, but today I'm absolutely miserable with hot flashes, but during and after nursing. I didn't have this symptom at all with my first son...just some night sweats, but no daytime hot flashes at all. I looked online at hot flashes and breastfeeding and it seems like most people think it's a lack of estrogen causing the hot flashes during nursing. Am I only exacerbating the huge drop in estrogen by taking so much progesterone, thus making the hot flashes worse? I don't really know what to do. I've been at 800 mg cream for 5 days now, and mentally I mostly feel good. But physically the hot flashes are unbearable...and last night I tried going to sleep without any oral progesterone, fell asleep and then woke up 20 minutes later wide awake...so had to take 200 mg oral progesterone and ambien in order to get to sleep. I'm scared and I don't know what to do with regard to my fluctuating hormones. I'm afraid if I go down on the progesterone it's going to make things worse, but I'm also afraid to go up on the progesterone, as I keep going up and the hot flashes are getting worse. My aunt is going to tell me to go on anti-depressants since they worked last time to get me through the hormonal upheaval...please help! Thanks so much.

Jun 25, 2013
pnd
by: Wray

Hi Jessica Well I'm pleased things seemed to have sorted out for you. And yes Dr Dalton was an amazing woman. It does take time for the hot flushes etc to calm down, three days is not sufficient. So please hang in there. As far as hormones are concerned anythings possible! I'm still being thrown curved balls by some women, leaving me baffled. Please have a look at our page on Hormone Testing. This will give you the levels found in blood or saliva tests. But how much 800mg will raise your level by is difficult to say. All the factors below would have to be taken into account. This is a good page to refer to about the different Progesterone Tests.
Continued below

Jun 25, 2013
pnd part 2
by: Wray

Hi Jessica These are a few things which cause progesterone levels to drop......
lack of or drop in vitamin D
dark days, especially winter, probably because vitamin D drops in winter due to lack of sun
high oestrogen
high testosterone
low SHBG (sex hormone binding globulin), this binds testosterone and oestrogen making them inactive
high LH
high FSH
high stress
high adrenaline (comes from Stress or excitement, and a drop in blood glucose), this stops progesterone entering the cells
sugars of any kind
large meals, because of the increased metabolic clearance of progesterone
alcohol, this reduces progesterone levels and increases the androgens, ie testosterone
high insulin
high level of phytoestrogens in the diet
oestrogenic herbs
oestrogen mimics or endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs)
contraceptives
HRT
insulin resistance
a defective luteal phase
high copper/low zinc
high prolactin

We're still having server site problems, so please stick to this page when replying. Take care Wray

Jun 26, 2013
Jessica
by: Wray

Hi Jessica It's only a day later from your last post in which you say apart from some hot flushes, all was well. Hormones are going to fluctuate, even with the amount of progesterone you're using. And your oesophageal spasms have gone, which is a good thing. There's only so much progesterone can do at any one time, and to expect it all to go so soon is I feel asking too much. Yes all the blogs do say it's oestrogen, but I'm not interested in blogs, I need firm proof it is, not hearsay. Don't forget oestrogen is still being made in your fat cells, so to say it's a huge drop is not true. These are the only papers I've found, and none of them help, see here, here and here. This is an interesting paper here. It's not something I've come across before. It says "During pregnancy, as well as the rise in plasma oestrogen and progesterone there is a very large increase in plasma corticotropin releasing hormone (CRH), and an increase in cortisol. The latter reaches levels found in Cushing's syndrome and major melancholic depression. Levels of all these hormones drop rapidly on parturition.....postnatal depression may be more atypical, triggered by cortisol withdrawal and associated with reduced cortisol levels." Has anyone checked your cortisol levels? Maybe this is something you could consider before giving up on progesterone and going on the AD's. Please read through that page I gave you on hot flushes, vitamin D is essential, have you had a test done? Magnesium, resveratrol, omega 3 and GABA have helped some women with them. It could be your vitamin D has dropped, this would make progesterone less effective, please have a test done. Have you had time to look through the list of things which make progesterone drop? Quite possibly one of them could be making it less effective. Please consider doing EFT. It's a remarkable therapy. Take care Wray

Jun 29, 2013
Two cents
by: Tanya

I would echo Wray's last comments about Magnesium and Vit D.
A significant relationship over time was found between low 25(OH)D levels and high EPDS scores, indicative of postpartum depression. http://jap.sagepub.com/content/16/3/170.abstract

I have read many things about how important Vit D levels in mom is vital for baby's development and growth even outside womb. I also recall it being related to pre-eclampsia, which makes sense for my history.

Magnesium and vitamin C will help with muscle issues..again, I am a testament to that. I recommend magnesium from Jigsaw (take 4 2x a day) and vit D in olive oil.

Jun 30, 2013
GABA
by: Tanya

I forgot to add that I also have had good results with GABA and recommend it for anxiety issues. You can adjust dose to your stress level and it isn't addictive, although you may notice that you like yourself better when you take it. :)

Not sure about using it while breastfeeding, though....but betting Wray already thought of that before she suggested it.

Jul 03, 2013
pnd
by: Jessica

Hi wray and Tanya

Thanks for your thoughts. Just had my vitamin d level checked and it was 74 so not low at all...which I am happy about. I take 250 mg of magnesium daily as part of a combo supplement with calcium and vit d. My progesterone blood serum was 8.6 which I was very surprised about. I couldn't believe it was that low after taking 800 mph progesterone cream and 200 to 400 mg orally for 11 days. My thyroid seems completely out of whack though with a tsh of .3 and a free t 3 of 2.2 and a free t4 of 1.44. My aunt didn't seem overly concerned about my thyroid though considering I was only 2 wks postpartum. I have started a low dose antidepressant because I was starting to spiral out Irvington but am still taking 800 mg cream and 400 oral. My aunt wants me to go down to only 200 oral since I have stopped breastfeeding and am on the anxiety meds...but I am worried that if I take that dose orally that I will just be in a state of estrogen dominance since my progesterone level is only 8 and that level is just a typical level for a low luteal phase...and I am also wondering if I took only 200 oral what that would do to my cycle which should be coming back now that I have stopped breastfeeding. I am also wondering what staying at my current dose of 800 cream plus 200 oral should do to my cycle now that I am done breastfeeding? Just don't want to screw things up for me more by preventing my body from making it's own progesterone which in theory should produce a higher level in the luteal phase than the 8 that the cream is giving me now.Thoughts appreciated.

Jul 04, 2013
pnd
by: Wray

Hi Jessica I'm a bit puzzled when you say your thyroid seems out of whack. Your TSH is 0.3, the range is 0.4 to 4.2, so it's slightly low. But low TSH means your thyroid seems to be working. If high it would be because the pituitary was trying to stimulate it. Your T4 is 1.44 which is in range, this being 0.7-2.0 ng/dL. Your T3 of 2.2 is low, the range being 4.0-7.4 pmol/L. This could be because you're stressed and you are producing too much rT3, this suppresses T3. Adrenaline increases levels of rT3. Adrenaline increases with stress. I would suggest a far better option of taking an antidepressant would be to up your progesterone. Easy enough to do, stop taking the oral and use it topically. This will give you 1000mg to 1200mg/day. Many women who are not pregnant use this much, see here, here, and here. And far better to look through the Anxiety page I gave you for all the nutrients which can help. The low progesterone indicates you're too stressed and it can't cope. It's within range for a normal luteal phase which is 5 to 20ng/ml, which is not high enough when stressed. Stopping or lowering the progesterone will send you into a tail spin, as you won't be making any until you start ovulating again, which could be many moons away. If you have stopped breast feeding then please supplement your baby with vitamin D, there is not enough in formula. And please give it taurine too, which is never added to formula. This is vital for the development of a growing baby, it's an essential amino acid for newborns as they can't convert it from cysteine. Take care Wray

Jul 04, 2013
Mag and anti-depressants
by: Tanya

I had to take 500 mg of mag to get results when I started because I was so low. I would also recommend stopping the calcium supplement unless you don't do dairy. They work together and you may not have right ratio. I recommended the Jigsaw brand because it is timed release so reduces the chance of bowel issues from high dose mag. I recently had to split my 250 dose because of those issues, which is a sign to me that my gut is healing (I started on LDN lately).

I strongly urge you to get off the anti-depressants as soon as possible. They are not safe. GABA...I use nature's sunshine brand, and at one point took 8 a day. It really does help and it doesn't have the potential to harm that the ADs do.

My thyroid has improved with my use of progesterone. I can't say much about blood levels, as I never had mine tested. I let symptoms guide me. Progesterone improves iodine use, and is connected to adrenal function also. The LDN helped my anxiety as well...like almost overnight. Cleared the brain fog so I could reason/be rational. Are you sure it is depression and not anxiety?

Jul 06, 2013
PND
by: Jessica

Hi Wray & Tanya,

Thank you again for your thoughts. A few follow up questions/comments. I guess per you and my aunt my thyroid isn't super out of whack, so I'll just not worry about that for now. With regard to continuing on progesterone, if I stay at the 800 mg/daily + 400 oral, or up it to 1000 to 1200 mg daily cream, what will that do to my cycle which in theory should be coming back at some point? Won't I be preventing a period from coming which should give me more progesterone in the luteal phase then the 8 I am at now? How long would you recommend I stay on the progesterone for now that I'm not breastfeeding? I know in Dalton's book she recommended at least 2 months, then to taper down slowly as symptoms warrant. I am planning on having a copper IUD put in at some point in the next few months, since I know that is what you recommended, but just want clarification on what you think the progesterone supplementation now will do to my body's natural ability to produce progesterone.

As far as my little guy, how much taurine would you recommend I give to the baby? I am supplementing Vitamin D already -400 IUs daily.

Tanya I take a calcium/magnesium/vit d combo supplement because I don't do much dairy. Ratio is 500 mg calcium, 250 magnesium and 200 vit d (I supplement with an additional 6400 Vit D daily) and I also take a multi-vitamin with Zinc (doesn't contain any copper). As far as your question about the anxiety...it was depression and anxiety and insomnia.

Thank you all for your help. I know this progesterone is working...and I trust that you guys will help me through this difficult time. It's just so confusing, especially since doctors (and even ones who are "in-tune" with natural hormone replacement therapy and integrative medicine have such different opinions).

Jul 06, 2013
PND
by: Jessica

Hi Wray,

Sorry to post again before waiting for a response to my last post, but I had a few follow up questions that I wanted to ask before I forgot (brain fog and having two kids under two makes me pretty forgetful these days).

After doing some more research on my thyroid, it appears that I may have postpartum thyroiditis, where your thyroid initially goes on the hyper end for a while, and then goes hypo and eventually regulates. My TSH is typically in the 1.6-2 range (I get it checked regularly b/c my mom has Hashimoto's), but after both pregnancies, my levels were very low right after birth. I am wondering if this could be contributing to some of my symptoms.

And speaking of symptoms, hot flashes, brain fog and now mild fibromyalgia muscle pain has started up, after feeling good for the last few days. I'm still taking 800mg progesterone cream daily + 400 oral for sleep. Is this all estrogen dominance still? If I keep upping my dose of progesterone cream, how on earth will I ever wean off of it completely in order to have my normal cycle return? I'm only 31 years old, so I should be following a cycle at some point right because otherwise I'm inhibiting my body's natural ability to produce progesterone.

I also wanted to ask your thoughts on continuing on with the pre-natal vitamin I have been on. I like that it has Zinc and higher iron since I don't eat a lot of meat. But it also has Folic Acid, so would that be a problem for me to be on long term?

And lastly, I've been scouring the site for magnesium references, and I've noticed conflicting information. Right now I take it as a combo with Vit D and Calcium, but I have heard that calcium can be excitatory...but on your site some women said that Magnesium can increase DHEA which stimulates Oestrogen, so wondering if I should take the Magnesium at all? I know Tanya recommended a dose of 500, while I've seen you recommend it to some women at a dose of 800.

I also quickly wanted to mention that I did look through your list of things that may drop progesterone. I right now eat only organic, very small meals, with no carbs...so that wouldn't be contributing. I'm not sure about my prolactin levels...not sure if the fact that I just stopped nursing would be affected. I've had LH and FSH levles drawn years ago when we were struggling to conceive, but they were in the normal range). So I'm sure stress is what's dropping my proesterone since I have a new baby and I'm also stressed about how crappy I'm feeling.

Thank you for being such a god send. You've made such a difference in the lives of so many...

Jul 07, 2013
Brain fog/fibro
by: Tanya

I think you should research low dose naltrexone. It has been a big piece of the puzzle for me, and when you mention brain fog and fibro, thyroid, it reminds me of me before LDN. Still not perfect but it cleared the fog almost immediately which made the other things easier to deal with and they are clearing gradually since as well.

Jul 08, 2013
PND
by: Wray

Hi Jessica I really wouldn't worry about your cycle, it's insignificant when compared to the symptoms you have. It will settle in time. In fact with the amount of progesterone you're using you probably won't have one, I doubt if you'll bleed either. It's acting as a contraceptive now, preventing ovulation. But then if you'd continued with the breast feeding, the oxytocin and prolactin which is secreted would prevent ovulation and bleeding. We only make between 5-20ng/ml in the luteal phase, so if you only make the 5ng/ml it won't be as much as you're getting now. I can't tell you how long to use it, the whole idea behind using it is to prevent PND and wean off slowly. But now you're on the ADs it's impossible to know. Please check the contents of the milk you're giving the baby, if there's no additional taurine then I suggest 100mg/day. Lack of magnesium can lead to pain, I suggest you increase the amount you're taking to about 800mg/day and see if that helps the fibro. This was Tanya's advise too. Calcium is found in other foods besides dairy, so maybe you're getting enough. Yes there is one doctor who says it increases DHEA, but I can't find one paper to back this up. I think I gave you the page we have on Hot Flushes, have a look and see if there are any clues. There will always be ups and downs, it's early days yet. Your hormones are fluctuating all the time, so some days will be good, others bad. It was the same with me too. You're so concerned about getting a cycle back again, don't be. If you were taking a Contraceptive, you wouldn't have one, not a natural one. And you wouldn't be making any ovarian progesterone either. There's evolutionary evidence that we shouldn't be having the 400 plus cycles we have in a lifetime, but about 100. That the excessive cycles we have means we get excessive amounts of oestrogen, see here. These are two others worth reading, see here and here. Folic acid is not a problem providing the amount isn't too high. Make sure you get enough B12, as excess folic acid can mask a B12 deficiency. Yes you are stressed, a new baby doesn't help. But I feel you're stressing over things which don't need stressing about, like your cycle for instance. Or thinking you're stopping your body making it's own progesterone. Have you considered doing EFT? Please think about it, as it does help stress. Take care Wray

Jul 15, 2013
Estrogen Dominance Symptoms
by: Jessica

Hi Wray,

So for the past 5 days or so I've been feeling like 90% well, but today, out of the blue, came massive estrogen dominance symptoms again...brain fog, tiredness, esophageal constriction and pain. I am still using 800 mg cream/daily and have been for the past month, and nothing changed in my diet, and there is no additional stress on my plate. One thing that I was hoping you could clear up is this: if I've never had brain fog, esophageal constriction or excessive tiredness before would the progesterone cream be causing this as a symptom of estrogen dominance? After my first son, I had no physical symptoms other than the insomnia and anxiety at 4 months postpartum and prior to that no issues whatsoever...and my thyroid was about the same, so the only variable is the progesterone cream.

I also wanted to update you to say that I had my progesterone level checked again and it was 21.8, so definitely has gone up since I last checked and it was an 8. My thyroid still seems off, especially my Free t3, which was a 2.0, tsh was .64 (so getting a little less hyper) and my free t4 was 1.19. I had my Vitamin B12 checked and it was 744 (lab reference range of 211-946) and an iodine urine test which was 168.7 (lab range 28-544).

Just wanted to know your thoughts on labs and also if you suspect the progesterone is causing these estrogen dominance symptoms to appear, most of which I've never had before in my life...and what your suggestion is.

Thanks so much.

Jul 18, 2013
Estrogen Dominance Symptoms
by: Wray

Hi Jessica As I said to you before, your hormones will be adjusting to a state with no foetus. It can be a hectic time, with or without progesterone. I can only imagine your ovaries are now starting up again having stopped breast feeding, and are now producing testosterone and oestrogen. But it's many months later that ovulation will occur. Using the progesterone of course will prevent this, but at the moment it seems you need the high amounts. Dr Dalton found with her patients it was impossible to work out if one would get PND or not. And if they had multiple births, impossible to tell at which birth it would occur, if at all. So not having any physical symptoms with your son, doesn't mean you won't get them after a subsequent birth or births. Pleased the progesterone has gone up, and glad you decided to continue with it. Your TSH is on the low side, but hopefully in time it will improve. I don't think you need worry about it, your aunt certainly didn't. Take care Wray

Aug 03, 2013
saliva tests
by: Jessica

Hi wray

Wondering really quick if you know if estrogen that is being stimulated by progesterone cream would show up in a saliva test or if the estrogen only shows up in symptoms and not saliva?

Thanks

Aug 04, 2013
saliva tests
by: Wray

Hi Jessica I'm a bit puzzled by your query. Depending on what hormone they test for, it will show in the results. So both progesterone and oestrogen will be picked up if that is what they test for. And then the ratio should be worked out. Testosterone should be checked too, as that also causes adverse symptoms if too high. Take care Wray

Aug 04, 2013
Saliva Tests
by: Jessica

Hi Wray,

Sorry if I wasn't making myself clear...what I wanted to ask is because I'm taking progesterone cream (and obviously not any estrogen), but we know that progesterone cream can also cause a long list of estrogen dominance symptoms when first starting(a lot of which I've experienced). So I'm wondering, if in a saliva test, if they test for progesterone and estrogen, will the estrogen that is being stimulated by the progesterone (as a result of using the cream, not just the natural estrogen that is in my body), will that show up in my saliva as well? Or are those estrogen dominance symptoms that come from using the cream only symptoms? Hope that helps to clarify.

Thanks,
Jessica

Aug 04, 2013
One More Question
by: Jessica

Just curious, do you have any idea how long it will take my body to metabolize out the 800mg of progesterone cream that I was using? Weeks, months? I used it for one month.

All the 400 mg/daily oral progesterone has already metabolized, as my blood tests show no elevated progesterone and no elevated estrogen, but they are awaiting the saliva tests which they requested for estradiol and progesterone. I've been off the cream for 2 weeks now and no signs of withdrawl bleeding in sight (and I haven't breastfed for 6 weeks).

Thanks so much,
Jessica


Aug 04, 2013
Saliva Tests
by: Wray

Hi Jessica Any oestrogen will show up, the test cannot be selective. To be more precise any oestradiol will show up, as that's the only oestrogen they test for, never the other two. Progesterone is metabolised hourly. It reaches a peak about 3-4 hours after applying it, then begins dropping about 13 hours after that. So it will be out of your body in a day or two, as the blood tests show. The saliva tests should show much the same as the blood tests, but just the amount is given in pg/ml, whereas the serum is done in ng/ml for progesterone and pg/ml for oestrogen. Take care Wray

Aug 04, 2013
test
by: Jessica

Hi wray

I thought on your site you say that cream shows very high in saliva but not in blood? So even if my blood is low my saliva could be high BC the majority of the progesterone I was using 800 mg/day was cream. And other places on the site you have said cream will take people longer to metabolize...not like the oral which is destroyed by gut and liver. So my main question is how long will it take the cream to metabolize out of my body at the high dose of 800 I used for one month. I think on the site you told one woman that if she used 100 cream it would take a few weeks to completely leave?

Thanks

Aug 04, 2013
test
by: Wray

Hi Jessica Progesterone appears to show higher in the saliva. Female (luteal) 75-250 pg/ml, and serum 5 to 20 ng/ml, see Medline Progesterone. A pg is 1000 times smaller than a ng. So divide the 75pg by 1000 and you get 0.075ng or the 250pg by 1000 and you get 0.25ng. You've stopped using the progesterone so the saliva should show a low level too. The saliva is generally regarded as the more accurate. It doesn't matter what delivery system is used for the progesterone, the body will metabolise it in the same way, at the same speed it normally does, see here, here and here. I'm not talking about being destroyed in the gut. I'm talking about progesterone in the body. Serum tests pick up that in the serum, they don't pick up that which is bound to red blood cells. This is picked up by saliva tests. Supplemental progesterone and that made by the body cannot be determined by the tests. So progesterone will always register at some level. Take care Wray

Aug 07, 2013
period
by: Jessica

Hi wray

I have been off the progesterone 800 mg cream and 400 oral for 2 1/2 weeks now and no period or withdrawl bleeding in sight. When I stopped nursing my son last time my period came right away (I know I probably didn't ovulate but at least got a period). Is the fact that I used so much progesterone mean its still circulating or sitting in my tissues suppressing all normal hormone function? Any idea how long it will take to come out? I can feel it still in my thighs where I applied the cream mostly....it gets hot and red more than other areas when I dry brush my skin.
Thanks

Aug 08, 2013
period
by: Wray

Hi Jessica I don't have any idea, beyond the fact that the reproductive system will start when it's ready. If you had a chance to read those papers I sent you, you'll see it's metabolised very quickly, and then excreted. So it should all be out by now. I don't know what cream you used, so the other ingredients could be causing the hot feeling. Take care Wray

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