How much progesterone should I take?

by Kay
(Ventura, CA)

I was on HRT for several years and switched to the estriol/progesterone cream. Then, my doctor prescribed estrio vaginal cream and I took that on and off for a couple of years.

Lately, I have had a heavy feeling and thought it might be bladder but then had a couple times of light spotting. I am 65 and postmenopausal so my doctor ordered an ultrasound which showed the uterine lining to be 11.5. I just had a biopsy and am waiting on the results. If they are not cancerous, how much progesterone can I take and how often? Also, my doctor prescribed the 100 milligram in a vaginal cream for once daily but it burns. What should I do? She says the progesterone might help reverse the size of the lining and she says I may have fibroids so wants to do a D&C.

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Aug 30, 2010
How much progesterone should I take?
by: Wray

Hi Kay Oestrogen in any form causes the lining to grow. I don't believe anyone needs extra, please see our page on HRT. Whether the results are cancerous or not you can still use progesterone, please see our web page on Cancer and progesterone. The amount of progesterone is entirely dependant on symptoms, the worse they are the more is needed. I recommend between 100-200mg/day, more if symptoms are very severe. For more info please see our page on Menopause. Progesterone should always be used twice daily as levels drop after about 13hrs. Your vagina is obviously inflamed as the cream stung. Most creams have a pH in balance with the skin, so they are acid. So using it on your skin and around the vagina will get levels up, and occasional when you can brave it put some in your vagina, as this is the only way to heal it. The progesterone will reverse the lining, but generally by making you bleed. It normally only occurs once, rarely twice. Unless the fibroids are tiny, they take more than a D&C to remove. For more info please see our page on Fibroids. Fibroids are stimulated by oestrogen, so if found it wouldn't surprise me. Take care Wray

Dec 30, 2010
How much progesterone should I take
by: Kay

Hello Wray, I wrote to you a few months ago and have been using around 100-150 of the progesterone daily since then.

I never had any spotting or bleeding so assume I still have the thick lining of the uterus. My DR. ordered another vaginal ultrasound which I will have early Feb. when I return home. Also, I have had some back pain near the kidney or gallbladder area and even went to ER with it. They think it might be gallbladder so will also have an MRI to determine that.

My question is that I read that high doses of progesterone have been known to slow the gallbladder function. What do you know about this?

Jan 08, 2011
How much progesterone should I take
by: Wray

Hi Kay I'm pleased you've been using this amount of progesterone. It could be your lining is not thick, and therefore there is nothing left to 'bleed' out. If you feel there is, or the ultrasound shows a thickness, I suggest you stop using the progesterone for a few days. MMP's are enzymes which break down the lining of the uterus, progesterone inhibits them. Once progesterone levels drop MMP's can get to work. This would cause a bleed if there is a lining. I suggest rubbing some cream on your back over your kidneys to see if it helps, progesterone is an anti-inflammatory. If you think it's gallbladder, rub some on your lower rib cage over the right side, which is where the liver and gallbladder sits. I've not heard of progesterone slowing gallbladder function, the reverse in fact. It speeds excretion of cholesterol from the liver, it would be a strange quirk if the end result was congestion in the gallbladder! See here. As you'll see from the paper, oestrogen inhibits cholesterol excretion. Taurine is an amino acid vital for bile production, it might be an idea to take some if you feel the problem lies with your gallbladder, see here, here and here. Take care Wray

Mar 02, 2011
How much progesterone should I take
by: Kay

Hi Wray,
Thanks for all your good advice. I kept using the progesterone cream and just had a follow up vaginal ultrasound. The lining of the uterus is normal and no sign of polyps! I have had tests and do have some sludge in the gallbladder along with a couple of small stones. Also had a kidney stone which has now passed. I will try to taurine. Can you tell me the recommended dosage? I am continuing the progesterone cream for another 3 months at 100mg per day, per DR request. Think she will reduce dosage some after that. What is a good maintenance dose if my uterine problems are resolved?
Thanks again.

Mar 10, 2011
How much progesterone should I take
by: Wray

Hi Kay I'm so delighted! Taurine is very safe, it's such a critical nutrient, for the heart, the eyes, for calming us down, and more. It's an osmolyte, so it's critically involved in the influx and efflux of the electrolytes in and out of cells. Plus as I said it's needed for the production of bile. I take about 5000mg/day, but you could start off with 1000mg and see if that helps you. If you do reduce the amount of progesterone, please do it slowly! Take a month or two gradually decreasing the amount. As for a maintenance amount, it's so difficult to say. Obviously the 100mg/day has helped you, that's the minimum I recommend! I still use about 170mg/day and that's after 15 years of using it. It's so beneficial for ageing, see here, here, here, here and here. You'll have to experiment, reduce it and see how you feel. Symptoms are an excellent way to judge the level. Take care Wray

Apr 03, 2011
by: lori

Been on HRT for three years, pri menopause at the age of 48, my dose of compound progesterone is 1ml (35MG) for 21 days per month and 2ml (70MG) for 5 days a month. I have never changed my dosage but my symptoms have changed, gained more wait my hair is falling out I have hypothyroid, haven't had a period for a year. My major question is do I change my dosage? The Estrogen & Testosterone cream are topically used 1ml daily with the progesterone.
Please help!

Apr 20, 2011
by: Wray

Hi Lori I don't believe any woman needs extra oestrogen or testosterone. Please see our page on HRT for more info. Testosterone also has a dark side in women, see here, here, here, here, here here, here, here, here, here and here. The weight gain and hair loss is caused by the testosterone, plus the oestrogen. The amount of progesterone you are using is merely increasing the amount of these two hormones. It's appears a paradox, but when first using progesterone, or when increasing it, or using too little, it stimulates oestrogen production. But before oestrogen is made, testosterone is made first. This is then converted to oestrogen by the enzyme aromatase. If insufficient is converted testosterone rises. If you should consider increasing the progesterone please read our page on Oestrogen Dominance first. I recommend 100-200mg/day, more info is given on our page on Peri-menopause and here on Menopause. Oestrogen slows the thyroid, so does a lack of vitamin D, please have a test done. For more info see the Vitamin D council and GrassrootsHealth websites. Take care Wray

Oct 15, 2011
Thinning of the endometrium lining
by: Anonymous

Hi, I wrote earlier about having PCOS, hypothyroidism and adrenal fatigue and ongoing low estrogen levels and elevated prolactin levels. Well my doctor just informed me that i have a thinning of the endometrium lining also. I've read that progesterone can cause this, if you have low estrogen or high progesterone levels (last saliva test showed high progesterone during the taken 4 days prior to menstruation which was early that month). I'm confused, as the progesterone i've been taking has been helping my adrenal fatigue, but not sure about what it may be doing to my endometirum and whether this is an issue or not. And whether taking progesterone without any estrogen is still ok?

Apr 15, 2013
postmenopausal dangers from progesterone
by: Anonymous

I just read an interview with Suzanne Somers and her endocrinologist regarding the use of bioidentical hormones, which, as you know Ms. Somers is a huge advocate of. Her doctor, however, states that because postmenopausal women
don't bleed anymore, it can be dangerous and only small doses for two weeks out of the month should be used. I am postmenopausal, with normal hormone levels, but, regardless of test results, I know my hormones are imbalanced so I have been using Natpro for 17 days now at 125 mg. Should I now stop for the rest of the month and use just two weeks each month to avoid any complications as Ms. Somers' doctor believes can occur with continuous use in postmenopausal women? She also says women should not use the hormones unless you are low. I am normal. Am I putting myself in danger?

Apr 17, 2013
postmenopausal dangers from progesterone
by: Wray

Hi there One could argue with the endo's reasoning that because women don't bleed any more they shouldn't be given oestrogen either! And yet they are. There are as many opinions about progesterone as there are brands, probably far more. Having used it for 16 years now, and continuously too, I'm in serious danger......of what? Did she say? Progesterone saved my sanity while in Peri-menopause, I'm happy to say I'm still alive and well. I never get ill in fact, not even a cold. Maybe because of all the vitamin D I take, which also ramps up the effect of progesterone, itself a powerful antioxidant. And why only two weeks, each time we stop it allows oestrogen to rise again. If a woman still has a cycle, particularly if she wants to fall pregnant, then it's best she does follow it. Using progesterone daily can act as a contraceptive, with no harmful affects. Which brings be back to the endo's reasoning again. Some forms of contraceptive are given via injection which lasts 3 months, or implants which last longer, these stop bleeding. How does one take a break from an implant? Synthetic too, with many potential adverse side effects. I'll place my bets on progesterone, to date there haven't been any adverse reports. And it's been used since the 1940's, time enough for them to emerge. Let's look at the other end of the age spectrum, newborn babies. They're given progesterone for respiratory distress syndrome. It's safety is without question, you might like to read this page here. You say you are using the progesterone because you know your hormones are unbalanced. And yet you say you are 'normal', by that I take it you mean your results came back normal? If this is the case it doesn't surprise me at all. They usually do, but rarely are the ratios checked. I would go by gut instinct as you are, tests can only give levels, they can't tell us or our doctors how we're feeling. If you have the results I can work out the ratio for you, I'd guarantee it would be very low. I wish the medical profession would read the studies on progesterone, before making pronouncements on it which scare women. Please read our page on Oestrogen Dominance, it can come out of the blue and take us by surprise. Let me know how you get on. Take care Wray

Feb 09, 2014
A hormonal mess
by: Alexa

I've been suffering from hormonal imbalance for a long time. I took a saliva test and it showed that my estrogen levels were ok but my progesterone and prognenalone levels are low. My thyroid is slow and adrenals slow. I developed a mouth condition shortly after going off hrt which was prescribed. I have cracks in the corners of my mouth, swollen gums, lining of mouth peeling, sores, severe chapping of lips. The only thing that heals this is if I go on birth control. Unfortunately I'm not having good reactions with these pills. I'm currently taking mini pill.. Progesterone only. But my anxiety and muscle tension increases, lethargic, and weight gain. If I take nothing I have severe anxiety . My cortisol levels we're shown to be very high as well. Any ideas on how to fix me.. I have chronic body muscular pain, brain fog, mood swings. I had insomnia when this originally started and I've been on lorazepam the last 16 years. The only time I felt wonderful was when I was pregnant with my daughter. It seemed to cute all my ailments.

Sep 15, 2015
I take 20 ml of progesterone cream every night
by: Anonymous

Do u think I should take more? I have trouble sleeping and I have ovary pain on the right side off and on for one to two weeks every other month.
I use the cream. I have been taking it since Jan. stopped for 3 days each month to start my cycle. I just started taking it everyday hoping to stop a cycle all together. I feel terrible during the time I am not taking it.

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