Progesterone levels before my period

by Nikki
(England)

Could a rise in progesterone levels just before my period be causing sensations of feeling unable to walk?

I'm a 23 year old with a 2 year old son. When I was younger I suffered lower back pain, sometimes I had to take weeks off work and college. When I got to the age of 20 my back pain was fine for a while, then when I fell pregnant I got sciatica and could hardly walk. After I had my son the backpain left me as quickly as it came. I didn't have a problem until about a year ago, if my periods are late, for about a week before I come on, get feelings of aching pain in my lower back. It travels down my legs and even my ankles hurt.

I came on this morning and was ok when I woke up but by the afternoon I could hardly walk. Its like my legs won't work. I feel weak and unable to stand up. My sister has just been diagnosed with scoliosis. As I have a son to look after and a job which involves standing up for hours on end, what is this condition and what can I do because it is affecting my ability to perform day to day activities? Please help.

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Feb 13, 2009
Progesterone levels before my period
by: Wray

Hi Nikki. The myopathy you are experiencing is due to the drop in progesterone levels shortly before your period, not a rise. Progesterone rises at ovulation or about 14 days before our period, reaching a high ±7days before the period, then drops sharply 2-3 days before. It's this drop which causes the adverse symptoms many women experience, the sugar and alcohol cravings, tiredness, depression etc. Plus the higher the oestrogen level during the luteal phase, the worse the symptoms.

The sciatica was caused by pressure from the growing foetus on the sciatic nerve, which is why the pain left after birth. The pain you experience in the week before your period is quite possibly caused by water retention putting pressure on the sciatic nerve. Progesterone is an excellent anti-inflammatory and diuretic, so rub some cream on your lower back when it occurs.

With regular progesterone use, you'll find the myopathy will go. It's something I had during peri-menopause and it left very shortly after starting using the cream. Incidentally scoliosis is most often caused by muscles in spasm, pulling the spine out of place. I suggest your sister finds someone doing a therapy which releases tension, ie Integrated Bodywork, Body Talk, EFT might help, accupressure or shiatsu. Take care, Wray.

Jun 14, 2009
Back pain
by: back pain

Wow thanks for the great information!

Jun 18, 2009
Thanks
by: Wray

Thanks! Take care, Wray

Oct 03, 2009
Progesterone levels before my period
by: JANE

Dear Nikki & Wray, wow I've had this same problem for years. I have been keeping track of it on a calendar for about 8 months now and it seems to be worse every other month. I was wondering if Nikki tried this and how it worked for her. I am on a couple of other medications and I am a little hesitant to try something new in case it screws up my other medications. But if it worked for both of you it would most definetly be worth me giving it a try.

Thank you if you could please email back under this topic that would be great! Thanks.

Oct 20, 2009
For Jane
by: Wray

The worsening every other month could be you are not ovulating every month. Unless we ovulate we make no progesterone in our ovaries. But we are still making oestrogen. Progesterone reacts with no drug, so if you wanted to try it no harm will be done, only good I hope! Unfortunately I had bad myopathy after the birth of my daughter, but knew nothing of progesterone then! I wish I could email you but I have no email address for you. So please would you contact me through this form. Take care.

Jun 21, 2010
BACK PAIN, NAUSEA
by: sandy

About the 20th or 21st of every month I get dizzy, nausea, loose stool and severe back pain (it sometimes feels like my hips are going to crack open). I also get something like panic attacks and suffer from anxiety during this time. The symptoms last about 10-14 days. The doctor does not think it is related to hormones as I has blood tests done which came back "normal". I started birth control (Seasonale). Five days after starting this drug I had the same symptoms but extremely severe. I stopped taking it. I had a uterine ablation done in May to remedy my heavy periods but it did nothing for the symptoms described above. I am useless during this time as I don't want to do anything but stay in bed. It is affecting my children and my husband. Any suggestions?

Jun 23, 2010
BACK PAIN, NAUSEA
by: Wray

Hi Sandy If you have a 28 day cycle, which it seems from the above, progesterone peaks ±21st day. It's not the progesterone causing the symptoms directly, but a stimulatory affect it has on oestrogen, which also rises mid-luteal phase. So a push/pull situation is going on. Oestrogen causes water retention which can upset the balance in the ears, it also causes nausea. It's pro-inflammatory hence the back pain. Progesterone on the other hand is an excellent diuretic, so is getting rid of the water as fast as it can, not fast enough to stop the dizziness, but enough to cause the loose stools. In fact it's such a good diuretic it's given via IV transfusion to brain trauma victims to prevent the oedema that forms after the injury. It also prevents the inflammation which occurs, as it's an excellent anti-inflammatory. Your reaction to the BC pill is a clue, women with low progesterone/high oestrogen react badly to it. So although your hormone levels came back 'normal' they couldn't have looked at the ratio of the two. It should be between 10-100, too big a range, and too low I feel. I've found if the ratio is well into the 100's we feel fine, anything lower and we feel awful. if you have the results, please divide the progesterone by the oestrogen to find the ratio. Another clue is your heavy periods, these are caused by excess oestrogen. Oestrogen and only oestrogen can cause the lining to grow. Matrix metalloproteinases (MMP?s) are enzymes that break down protein. They play a role in the breakdown of endometrial tissues at the end of the menstrual cycle. If they are over active, as would be the case with an excess of oestrogen in the body, (oestrogen stimulates it?s production), the result is a pathological reaction such as inflammation. This can lead to many things, including excessive bleeding in the uterus. Progesterone suppresses MMP's. It?s only when progesterone levels drop at the end of the cycle that the MMP?s can get to work and breakdown the lining causing our monthly bleed. But with oestrogen continually stimulating more lining, and low progesterone, bleeding continues. To stop heavy bleeding the amount of progesterone needed initially is high, between 200-400mg/day. The anxiety and panic attacks are caused by a drop in GABA levels, GABA is one of our most calming neurotransmitters, progesterone activates the GABA receptor sites. With a high level of oestrogen suppressing the progesterone, GABA levels drop. For more info on this please see our web page on Anxiety. If you do decide to use progesterone please see our web page on Oestrogen Dominance first. It can occur and is most disconcerting when it does. You've had a taste of it every 21st day of the month. Take care Wray

Feb 13, 2011
Help
by: Patricia

I have been having panic attacks and palpitations for 15 years. I read one of your last comments about people who react badly to BC meds and that's me. I believe I am having palpitations related to my period. I have palpitation through the first two weeks but not bad then the last two weeks the get worse especially in the last week. Then when my period hits they almost completely stop and right after I stop bleeding they come back. I have had amino acid tests done because of my panic attacks and palpitations and my GABA was high, my norepinephrine was elevated, my cortisol was elevated, these of course explain my panic attacks. I get horrible cravings for salty and sweet before and during my period. Horrible mood swings including crying episodes right before my period. Should I be using progesterone cream?

Feb 25, 2011
Help
by: Wray

Hi Patricia All Contraceptives lower progesterone levels. Progesterone is needed to activate the GABA receptor sites. Evidently your GABA is not going where it should, so is high. GABA is one of our most calming neurotransmitters, and is essential to stop panic attacks, but it needs direction! We do have a page on Anxiety which explains everything. Excess oestrogen causes palpitations, as it causes prolongation of the QT interval, which results in palpitations, arrhythmia and Torsades de Pointes. Whereas progesterone shortens the QT interval, see here, here, here, here and here. Oestrogen starts climbing after a period, see this Chart on hormone levels. This would explain the slight palpitations. It drops slightly just before ovulation, then rises again during the luteal phase. Progesterone should rise sharply during the luteal phase, but if the corpus luteum is not producing sufficient, or none at all, this extra boost of oestrogen is enough to worsen the palpitations. It would appear you are in Peri-menopause? If so this explains the above, as we don't ovulate each month during this phase. Anovulation actually starts about age 35. Ovulation ceases entirely at Menopause. It seems you are making a little progesterone, as your symptoms worsen, including the cravings, the week before your period. This is explained by progesterone dropping too quickly in ratio to oestrogen, causing Oestrogen Dominance. Oestrogen also upsets blood glucose, another reason for panic attacks. The salt cravings are an indication your adrenals are stressed, it's often given to help them. These are stressed as they are making far too much adrenaline, which is also implicated in panic attacks. So yes, I do believe progesterone will help you, plus the nutrients listed on the anxiety page, particularly inositol and taurine. Please use sufficient progesterone, details on the pages I've given. Take care Wray

May 26, 2011
Severe Period Pain
by: Mrs C

Hi
I'm 44 and for most of my life I've had light periods with no or mild pain but for the last 4 or 5 years, I've had some periods that have been so painful that I've been screaming out in pain. Worse than labour pains, with nausea, pain in thighs plus weakness and shakiness. I took Agnus Castus and that seemed to help keep them at bay but they've returned. I don't like taking meds but went to my GP and she gave me 3 options-Mirena IUS coil, Mefanamic Acid (NSAID) or Tranexamic Acid. I don't need contraception as my husband is infertile although I'd take a pill if it was the best option for me. I had a child at age 26. I'm slim, non-smoker, started periods late, flat chested. The Mefanamic Acid option seems good for the pain but would like to deal with the cause and get my hormones in balance. What would you recommend? (Is the pill, Yasmin any good?)

Jun 03, 2011
Severe Period Pain
by: Wray

Hi Mrs C All drug based Contraceptives have the potential to cause adverse side effects, including the Mirena. I would never recommend them for contraception or to control pain either. You might like to see these sites on Yasmin, and Yaz which is the same drug, see here, here and here. You are now in Peri-menopause, which is such a difficult time with dropping progesterone levels. The cramps are caused by prostaglandins, these also cause labour pains too. But your progesterone level is low now, whereas just prior to birth it can get as high as 425ng/ml. So it doesn't surprise me the pain is worse now. Progesterone is a potent anti-inflammatory. If you should consider using it I recommend 100-200mg/day, but please read our page on Oestrogen Dominance first, as this can occur. It can take time for the progesterone to settle down, but it is excellent for cramps, which will eventually be helped. It is normal to stop the progesterone when a period starts, but if cramping should occur while bleeding, it's safe to use it during your period too. I find it far more important to get rid of adverse symptoms, even if it means the cycle might become erratic. I would also ask you to have a vitamin D test done too. This is the most important nutrient for health and another potent anti-inflammatory, see here, here, here, here and here. For more info see the Vitamin D council and GrassrootsHealth websites. Take care Wray

Jan 04, 2012
pregnancy symptoms, but not
by: Anonymous

For the past 6 months i've been feeling pregnant each month. Then i get my period and it goes away. I'm guessing it has to do with the amount of oesterogen / progesterone level my body is producing each month. But why wasn't it happening before? Will i go back to normal?

Jan 09, 2012
Abrupt hormonal change right when I get my period
by: Marie

Hi, I know many women suffer from PMS a few days before their period, but for me, the exact opposite is true. From the day after ovulation until the day I get my period, I feel GREAT. Meaning, I have a good appetite, I sleep nice and deep, and I'm not nervous at all. But then the minute my period comes, BOOM, I'm a nervous, shaking mess. From the day I get my period to the day of ovulation, I actually have to stay on Xanax just to function. I have no appetite, muscles in my face are twitching, I can't sleep, I get OCD symptoms, and STRONG ANXIETY. But once ovulation is over, I look forward to the next 2 months of HEAVEN, the two weeks leading to the next menstrual period. Can anyone tell me which hormone is either dropping or rising so quickly the second I get my period until ovulation that has the power to disrupt everything so much? Again, my bad days are Days 1-14, and the really good days are Days 15-28. Thanks for any advice! :-)

Jan 11, 2012
pregnancy symptoms, but not
by: Wray

Hi there I would have to have more info before I can help you. For instance what age you are, if in Peri-menopause this could possibly explain what's occurring. We do have another page you could look at, the answer might be there, see How to use progesterone cream. Take care Wray

Jan 11, 2012
Abrupt hormonal change right when I get my period
by: Wray

Hi Marie This is so interesting. You might like to see a Chart we have on the rise and fall of the hormones. It appears you are making a great deal of progesterone during your luteal phase. Most of the women who write in are not, hence their many adverse symptoms. Progesterone peaks mid-luteal phase, but so does oestrogen. If, as so often happens, the corpus luteum makes insufficient progesterone to counter the oestrogen, all hell breaks loose. Or if the luteal phase is too short, ie less than 12 days, progesterone levels remain too low. Thirdly there is a drop in the two hormones during the last few days before bleeding. If progesterone drops faster than oestrogen, adverse symptoms occur. The sharp drop in progesterone you are experiencing sends you into the state you describe. But shortly after this oestrogen begins rising, evidently this is what you are experiencing too. Although it's not normal to use progesterone during the first half of the cycle, I do recommend it if symptoms are as severe as yours. If you should consider it, please be aware that initially progesterone can upset the cycle. Plus Oestrogen Dominance can occur, of which you are only too familiar. It's essential to use sufficient to prevent this, or certainly make it as mild as possible while progesterone levels increase enough to suppress this excess oesterogen. I normally recommend 100-200mg/day, but you might find you need more initially. We do have more info on our page How to use progesterone cream. We also have a page on Anxiety which gives a list of nutrients which help. Inositol reverses symptoms of OCD, you could consider taking this. Amounts between 12-18g/day (12,000-18,000mg) have been used, see here. Take care Wray

Jan 11, 2012
Re:
by: Marie

Okay, thanks so much for all of that info, Wray! Very, very helpful.

Jan 27, 2012
hip pain
by: sleepless

I am fifty one and still having regular periods. From around ovulation time till I start my period I start having an increasing amount of hip pain and then back pain and increasing joint pain all over. The hip pain becomes so severe a few days before my period that i can't sleep, even sitting is very uncomfortable. I also start having muscle spasms in hip. I feel much better though after the second day of my period. I do have a few bulging discs and although that can cause hip pain my hip hurts to even press on it. Is this simply fluid retention or a hormon inbalance--high estrogen??? Will this pain get better or worse after i stop having periods?

Jan 27, 2012
Re:
by: Wray

Hi Marie Glad it was of help. Let me know how you get on. Take care Wray

Jan 27, 2012
hip pain
by: Wray

Hi there Peri-menopause is the hardest phase of our lives I feel, mine certainly was! Progesterone levels are dropping, in fact have been since age 35. We begin getting anovulatory cycles round about then, when no progesterone is secreted. These increase in frequency through P-M, until Menopause when the ovaries stop making viable eggs. Excess oestrogen causes pain, it's an inflammatory hormone. Oestrogen drops to it's lowest level during our period, which is why you feel better. It then begins rising again until it peaks at ovulation. It then takes a small dip, before peaking again mid-luteal phase. If insufficient progesterone is made during the luteal phase, or none at all, there is nothing to counter this oestrogen rise. You might like to see a Graph on the rise and fall of the hormones. I can't say if it will get better or worse after menopause, as we still make oestrone in our fat cells. This oestrogen is as potent as oestradiol, the pre-menopause oestrogen. I would recommend you try progesterone, there's nothing to loose and everything to gain. But please use sufficient, too low a level will stimulate oestrogen and make matters worse. The page on P-M gives info on how to use it. But before you do, please read out page on Oestrogen Dominance first as this can occur. Take care Wray

Mar 12, 2012
Help me...
by: michele

I hope someone answers..here....Im 46 have regular periods, HOWEVER a week before I start, Im anxious, I feel off, knees week, shakey, stomache ache , night sweats!!! Doc wants me to take Celexa, I dont want to !!! I thinks its my hormones, so I did FSH.,its 27.9....um I still have periods...
Anyway, Im 5'1 healthy , 119 pounds, I got all natural progeserone creme, but with the anxitey comes, " Im scared to use creme, what if it does somthing to me" Im sure it wont, but could someone please tell me whats going on in my body:)

Mar 14, 2012
Help me...
by: Wray

Hi Michele You're now in Peri-menopause, I found it an impossible time, but then discovered progesterone when I was 47. Luckily too! You certainly don't need an antidepressant, this dishing out of AD's to women with no thought of what's happening to them annoys me no end. You do need progesterone, but you don't say what strength the cream is. I recommend 100-200mg/day, the chances are you've been advised to use 20-40mg/day. I've found this merely makes things worse. And what can progesterone 'do' to you? It's very safe, having been used for over 60 years now, there are no adverse reports on it's use. Except by women who use too little, who then flood the internet with their condemnation of it. They'd make better use of their time by reading the studies on progesterone. The link above gives you info on how to use it, and what's happening to you too. Your FSH is still within the normal range, you can check it on our page Hormone Testing. And please look around the site at the other comments. These might be a start, see here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here. We also have a search field top left of every page. Take care Wray

Mar 14, 2012
Wray!!!!
by: Michele

Thank you but im super confused when to use it!!! I am going to start period on the 20th or so, so many people tell me to use now?? do I? Uggg...So I been using for the last 3 days, is that wrong?

I read on when but dont understand where I fall, since i have regular periods..??

Mar 14, 2012
Wray me again, heres info..
by: michele

forgot to add, the bottle says
20mg of natural progesterone
1 full pump dispenses about 1.2 grams providing 20 mg of USP progesterone...ok no what..:)
its called Now Solutions..

Mar 17, 2012
ok Wray
by: Michele again...

SO I was to start on or around, the 20th I started today...:) So now I stop creme until day 12? right? then start it up again, I can say I did not have night sweats but did feel more crazy than last cycle..I dont know why, though. Are you suposed to notice any changes at all, with using for 6 days, ? Sorry for the question,as right now I dont have insurance, and Im trying to figure it out as I go..Thanks again..

Mar 18, 2012
ok Wray
by: Wray

Hi Michelle I wrote the page on peri-menopause some years back. So when you said you didn't know when to use it, I read through it again. And I don't say when, I'll change that, but there is a link to our page How to use progesterone cream. This explains when, how and how much. Briefly you are using far too little to my mind, I recommend 100-200mg/day, the more severe the symptoms the more is needed. It should be started at ovulation, or within the 50 hours prior to ovulation, when there's a surge of progesterone from the brain. So if you ovulate on day 12, that is when you should use it. And it should be used for 14 days, ie mimicking the luteal phase. I see you have not been told about Oestrogen Dominance. This page explains the crazy feelings. When first using progesterone it can upset the cycle, which it has with you. So yes stop using it, and wait till you ovulate before starting it again. Take care Wray

Apr 13, 2012
Me Again Got my results!!!
by: Michele

ok here we go
Estridol 3.6
Progesterone 72
cortisol am 5.9

Now I have this what do I do, Im on my 4th day of cycle and Im going nuts extreme, no sleep, feel anxious, tight in face, breathing off, dizzy...but Im not using creme, since I was to stop for period what is going on???? Do I need creme all the time, I cant take it....I thought when I was to start period it would all quiet down its not...???Please Wray one more time for answer..:)

May 01, 2012
Post Menopausal PMS
by: Anonymous

Hi, I've got an unusual problem (apparently) in that even though I am postmenopausal, my body is still behaving as if I am not. All through perimenopause, menopause and now postmenopause, I have been suffering from severe PMS once a month, usually coinciding with the full moon. Just prior to the full moon, I get a whole range of PMS symptoms, just like when I was having periods. They are quite severe, with crying and depression, anxiety, negative thoughts, heart palpitations,left breast tenderness, water retention, scanty urine flow and worst of all, severe clay/putty like constipated stools. Doctors and even naturopaths seem mystified. I've been told that what is happening to me is not possible. The constipation stool consistency the week before my non existent period has actually become worse as I've entered menopause, not better. I have a cycle that I am not supposed to have apparently. Any ideas as to why and what I can do about it? One naturopath said I was oestrogen dominant but didn't seem to suggest what to do about it. I am assuming my body thinks I am still having a period, which is the only reason it would be following a cycle which is the same as when I was ovulating. Help please? Thanks

May 02, 2012
Post Menopausal PMS
by: Wray

Hi there I find this fascinating, and have no explanation, other than the moon! It can affect us, and you are obviously far more sensitive than most, probably more observant too. The scanty urine flow obviously means you're retaining water, this would adversely affect the bowels. We need water over and above all the other things we're told to take for constipation. Oestrogen causes water retention, drawing it from the gut, whereas progesterone is an excellent diuretic. There's info about this aspect on our Traumatic Brain Injury page. Oestrogen causes prolongation of the QT interval, which results in palpitations, arrhythmia and Torsades de Pointes. Whereas progesterone shortens the QT interval, see here, here, here, here, here, here and here. It also causes Breast Tenderness. And the crying, depression and Anxiety too. If you had a Saliva Test done, they would find low levels of oestradiol, this seems to put most doctors in a spin and so they prescribe it. But it should be low, it's made by the ovaries which have stopped production. But oestrone is never checked, and this we make in our fat cells to the day we die. It's evident your fat cells are alive and well, and are somehow in tune with the moon. If you do consider trying progesterone, I normally recommend 100-200mg/day or more, although I feel initially you would do better on the 200mg/day amount, although you might need more. As you're now in Menopause I would suggest you use it daily. Take care Wray

May 09, 2012
too young to go crazy
by: Wray

Hi there You are right about the depot causing the problems, all Contraceptives have the potential to cause harm. Often adverse symptoms are noticed while on the drug, and women have to stop it. But I've found it's when stopping it that even more problems start. Your doctor is right about your progesterone being low, most contraceptives stop ovulation, so no progesterone is made. The depot does not contain progesterone, but a progestin or synthetic version. The link I've given above explains what happens after stopping the contraceptive, and the weight gain. All the symptoms you've given indicate excess oestrogen and testosterone. We do have a page on How to use progesterone cream. I recommend 100-200mg/day, but with your symptoms feel you will need at least 200mg/day or more. I can't tell you how much, it is trial and error. We also have a page on Pregnancy too. If you've been told your vitamin D is very low, then it's probably very, very low. Most labs and doctors regard 30ng/ml or 75nmol/L as adequate, it's not. Blood levels should be 70-100ng/ml or 175-250nmol/L, and the minimum daily dose should be 5000iu's per day, although the latest research indicates it should be 10,000iu's per day, see here. Do you know your level, and how much vitamin D are you taking? A lack of vitamin D causes weight gain, see here, here, here, here, here, here and here. Please make sure you are taking enough vitamin D. Continued below.

May 09, 2012
too young to go crazy Part 2
by: Wray

Hi there For more info on vitamin D levels, test kits etc see the Vitamin D Council, GrassrootsHealth, Birmingham Hospital and Vitamin D Links websites. Blood levels should be 70-100ng/ml or 175-250nmol/L and not the 30ng/ml or 75nmol/L most labs and doctors regard as adequate. The minimum daily dose should be 5000iu's per day, although the latest research indicates it should be 10,000iu's per day, see here. Take care Wray


Jun 03, 2012
too young to go crazy
by: Anonymous

update I just finish an one month start of progesterone cream about 200mg per day and I feel so good, just like my old self.e want another child so today I'm suppose to start my period today and haven't so we will see,but I feel so good now its so unbelievable, I will keep posted if I get pregnant,thanks again

Jun 04, 2012
too young to go crazy
by: Wray

Hi there It's good news you feel so much better! Progesterone can upset the cycle when first using it, and when increasing it. So it could be because of this you haven't started bleeding yet, or you could be pregnant. Please continue with the progesterone until bleeding occurs or Pregnancy is confirmed, if it is you should continue using it. There's more info on this page about how to proceed. Take care Wray

Aug 22, 2012
extreme tiredness, hip and joint pain
by: kiki

Hi, I am 44 and have had since having kids, very loose stool prior to getting my period, almost to the point of being like IBS. I have had a partial hysterectomy do to ovarian cysts,they took one ovary and my uterus, I have my right ovary left.

I have always been able to tell when I have ovulated because of extreme breast tenderness. I assume when I would have gotten a period when that tenderness goes away. I have a very short Luteal phase, 10 days, (I used temp and check cervical fluid when trying to get pregnant and charted)

I have this pain right after ovulation: I have been experiencing pain in my right hip, and lower back, almost like my hip getting "stuck" hurts to sit, stand, also hurts about an inch inward from hip, more the groin area, I do have a labral tear, but it wasn't bad enough for surgery.
I also injured my tibia 5 months ago,I have also experience tenderness, pain in that injured area during this time too.

Could this be from low progesterone/to high estrogen? I have yet to find a Dr that will test me :(

I feel like I am falling apart. I also did notice, that I am experiencing my breast tenderness every 17 days now. (about a 15-16 day cycle for the last 2 months)

Aug 25, 2012
extreme tiredness, hip and joint pain
by: Wray

Hi Kiki The problems you have prior to bleeding and ovulation are due, as you say, from your P:E2 ratio being skewed. Progesterone withdrawal causes the problems prior to bleeding, and the failure of the progesterone surge prior to ovulation is causing the ovulation pain. The failure of this surge could be responsible for the short luteal phase. We have more info about this on our Menstruation and Pregnancy pages. I can't tell you why you are getting the back and hip pain, but oestrogen is an excitatory, inflammatory hormone, which could well be the cause if your level is high. It certainly appears your progesterone is too low, which would have the same affect, it's the ratio which is all important. We do run Saliva Tests periodically, you'll notice how the ratio changes in the woman comparing the before and after. You could have the tests done yourself via ZRT Labs. We do have two pages on breasts you could look through, see Breast Tenderness and Breast Cysts. As you are probably in Peri-menopause now, you might like to look through this page. If you should consider progesterone, please use enough. I recommend 100-200mg/day, more if symptoms are severe. A lack of vitamin D reduces the benefits of progesterone, plus it can cause pain, please have a test done. For more info on vitamin D levels, test kits etc see the Vitamin D Council, GrassrootsHealth and Birmingham Hospital websites. Blood levels should be 70-100ng/ml (175-250nmol/L) and not the 30ng/ml (75nmol/L) most labs and doctors regard as adequate. The minimum daily dose should be 5000iu's per day, although the latest research indicates it should be 10,000iu's per day, see here. Take care Wray

Aug 30, 2012
Confused
by: SM

Hello,

Of all my readings on progesterone (P) treatment, your website is most impressive. I'm hoping you could help me understand my current situation:

From a young age I have felt "overworked", although continuing to push forward. From my years as an athlete training 6 hours per day, to family stress from both my parents, I've always felt "stressed" (I should note that I was bullied in junior high through sophomore year in high school). I perceived all my stressors as a push to make my own life worthwhile, exceeding expectations--a "go getter".

I'm married to an incredible man. I would say our relationship is pretty close to being A+. We got married young so it took some time to perfect (with family stress being the major culprit to any arguments).

I didn't want kids until now. I'm 35 years old and live a very healthy lifestyle by eating organic foods, working out daily.

Menses were very heavy onset at age 14 - 28. At age 15, a Dr. prescribed the pill to stabilize my periods; i felt horrible and very depressed, discontinued using after 2 months. Around age 28 I began to refine my diet and lifestyle, periods became "normal". I never missed periods, arriving like clockwork on day 30-31.

I've been seeing a naturopath and have concluded the following:
- very low progesterone (salivary) 30.60
- ratio of PG/E2 off because of low (P)
- Estrogens, DHEA, testosterone all within range.
- low iodine

Dr. started me on topical progesterone 2x's per day, 20mg each application. First month had my period on day 25 (almost 5 days earlier), 2nd menses day 24, and now, 3rd cycle day 15. I'm also taking idoral (1 tablet, 12mg)

First 2 menses I dosed the progesterone 2x's per day @ 20mg, beginning on day 7-24 (didn't think I'd get period that early). Breasts became very full within the first couple weeks (I have smaller breasts to begin with), I felt very, very good overall.

I began my 3rd cycle by taking the progesterone only 1x per day, then on day 15 I got a brown discharge that turned into a period on and off (very light) for the past 3 days. Also to note: I had horrible low back pain the first few days of the brown discharge to light menses. My Dr said its because I cycled down to 1x per day and my body perceives it as being low in progesterone.

What are your thoughts? You mentioned not to take (P) until ovulation, and by taking on day 7 on your cycle is actually a form of contraception. This obviously concerns me.

My Best,
SM


Aug 31, 2012
my dr. perscribed compounded progesterone
by: Anonymous

Hi,
I'm at 42 year old being treated for hypothyroidism. My Dr. checked my progesterone levels last week (via blood) the day before I started my period. I heard from her two days later and was told my progesterone level was .09 and should be at least 5.
She called in a script for compounded progesterone 100 mg/gm cr 30. She also told me to use it EVERYDAY!
My question is, is this safe? Or should I be starting it on day 12, since my cycle is 26 days?
I'm on day 7 and I feel so depressed and angry. Is this normal?
Thank you :)
Trish

Sep 01, 2012
my dr. perscribed compounded progesterone
by: Wray

Hi Trish Firstly your progesterone was checked at it's lowest level, 0.09 is normal just prior to bleeding, and for the entire follicular phase too. We do have a page on Hormone Testing you might find useful. Progesterone begins dropping the few days before bleeding and doesn't rise again until the 50 hours prior to ovulation. It should always be checked ±7 days after ovulation or before bleeding, i.e. mid-luteal phase. This phase is always, in all women, 12-14 days long. Progesterone peaks mid-luteal phase, so should only be tested then. Any other time is meaningless. I do recommend using progesterone daily to women with severe symptoms, are yours severe? This ensures it suppresses any excess oestrogen, the cycle can be followed again once symptoms have calmed down. If your symptoms are not too bad, there's no point in using it daily. You don't say how much you're using, I know it's a 10% cream, but how much cream are you using per day? It's sounds too little, judging by your symptoms. I recommend 100-200mg/day, more if symptoms are bad. It should also be used a minimum of twice a day too, as levels begin dropping after 13 hours. We have more info on our page How to use progesterone cream. As you're heading for Peri-menopause you might like to look through this page too. It sounds as if your vitamin D levels could be too low, this is vital for normal thyroid functioning, see here, here and here. Please have a test done. For more info on vitamin D levels, test kits etc see the Vitamin D Council, GrassrootsHealth, Birmingham Hospital and Vitamin D Links websites. Blood levels should be 70-100ng/ml (175-250nmol/L) and not the 30ng/ml (75nmol/L) most labs and doctors regard as adequate. The minimum daily dose should be 5000iu's per day, although the latest research indicates it should be 10,000iu's per day, see here. Take care Wray

Sep 01, 2012
Confused
by: Wray

Hi SM Thanks for the kind words about the site. Your description of stress is very apt, feeling 'overworked', it does cause havoc with all our systems, including reproductive. Many women can't tolerate any Contraceptives for an obvious reason. By stopping ovulation it prevents any progesterone being made by the ovaries. This leads to depression, Anxiety and more. A pity you weren't offered progesterone for the heavy bleeding, as it does stop it. But sad to say, it's never offered. We do have more info on our Menstruation page. I don't understand why you were told to use the progesterone from day 7 if you have regular cycles, and no severe symptoms. I only recommend using it daily, or before ovulation if excess oestrogen needs suppressing. Or someone wants to use it as a contraceptive, because yes, it does act as one. Albeit one without any adverse side effects, unlike the synthetics. Progesterone does upset the cycle when first starting it, but using it as you have, it will most definitely affect it. And telling you to stop it on day 25 is daft! It's something I can't get my head around, but all doctors, and I mean all, think that the woman's monthly cycle is 28 days long, it's not! A normal cycle ranges from 21 days, which is my daughter's case, to 35 days. Which of course makes 28 days the average only. As you seem interested in info, have a look at this study, as it shows the huge variation in our cycles. They were concentrating on the follicular phase, as this causes the different lengths. The luteal phase in all women, is always 12-14 days long, see here. So in your case, you would ovulate ± days 16 or 17, which is when you should have started the progesterone. I always suggest using it from ovulation for 14 days, as I'm usually advising women who have severe symptoms, particularly just prior to bleeding. Stopping progesterone too early, as most suggest, often leaves the women still feeling awful. If you wanted to use the progesterone as a contraceptive, you should start it ± days 10-12. As you're interested in having kids, please see our page on Pregnancy, and this one here too. Take care Wray

Sep 04, 2012
to young to go crazy
by: Anonymous

I just wanted to give update still not pragnant,the cream works when i ovalate, but when i start my period my stomach,face,neck, legs just alot of pain,i feel like I'm going crazy again, and still no baby yet,I have been on the cream for about 6 months.I get my period every 28 days, but its still very heavy and painful...

Sep 04, 2012
to young to go crazy
by: Wray

Hi there I'm not sure what advice I gave you before. I can't pick up who you are, either from your name or the subject title. But it seems you are not using enough progesterone, particularly the few days prior to bleeding. It appears you would probably do better on at least 200mg/day for those few days, if not for the 7 days prior to bleeding. I have found heavy, painful bleeding can be helped with 400mg/day. It's also a good idea to take at least 2000mg/day NAC (N-acetyl cysteine), this inhibits the MMPs which cause the lining to shed. There's more info on our page about Menstruation. Take care Wray

Sep 04, 2012
my dr. perscribed compounded progesterone
by: Anonymous

Hi Wray,

Yes, my symptoms of dominance are extreme. Probably am peri-menopause.
I do take 10,000 i.u.'s of D3 a day.
I am using the creme 4 times a day.
I did notice a reprieve of some symptoms, however this morning I woke up extremely bloated and also very constipated.
This is day 12 using the cream. I'm guessing it takes a while to build up in the system.

Thank you Wray for your wealth of knowledge.
Trish

Sep 05, 2012
my dr. perscribed compounded progesterone
by: Wray

Hi Trish You're only 42, so you might be right at the beginning phase of Peri-menopause. This can start 5-10 years before Menopause. It started 10 years before for me, I was 51 when I stopped bleeding. I'm pleased you're taking 10,000iu's vitamin D per day, please have a test done after about 3 months to check your levels. It's excellent news you're using the progesterone 4 times a day, this keeps the level stable. But I don't know how much you're using per day, please let me know. It should be at least 100mg/day, but judging by your "symptoms of dominance are extreme" I would suggest 200mg/day or more. This means you should be using at least 2ml of cream per day. Progesterone stimulates oestrogen initially, particularly if not enough is used. There's more info on our Oestrogen Dominance page. Oestrogen causes water retention, mostly by drawing it from the gut, hence the constipation. Water trapped in tissue is causing the bloating. Progesterone is an excellent diuretic, now given to Traumatic Brain Injury victims to prevent oedema forming. It appears to me you're not using enough. Unless you're happy to weather these adverse symptoms on the amount you are using. And yes it does take time to settle down, 3 months in some, 6 months in others. I have found one or two symptoms are helped in the early days, but more persistent ones take far longer. Thanks for the kind words. Take care Wray

Sep 05, 2012
Confused
by: SM

Hi Wray,

Thank you for the update. I'm copying your responses below and my questions inserted in between with an astrick (*):


I don't understand why you were told to use the progesterone from day 7 if you have regular cycles, and no severe symptoms. I only recommend using it daily, or before ovulation if excess oestrogen needs suppressing.

* This originally dumbfounded me and probably why I stumbled onto your blog. My cycles were very normal (ie., bleeding/clotting normal, never missed a cycle, no pain with intercourse or periods, PCOS negative, etc). Estrogen + testosterone are all within range.

Progesterone does upset the cycle when first starting it, but using it as you have, it will most definitely affect it.

* So the first 2 months of taking progesterone would upset my cycle in getting my menses on day 25 and 24 (2nd cycle)? I should note my first cycle was very heavy for almost 3-4 days. I asked my naturopath and she said this is common and should regulate by next period, which it did.

The luteal phase in all women, is always 12-14 days long, see here. So in your case, you would ovulate ± days 16 or 17, which is when you should have started the progesterone.

* Now, am I going off my current cycle (menses on day24 or 25) to ovulate on day 16-17 or my previous cycle of every 30 days?

I always suggest using it from ovulation for 14 days, as I'm usually advising women who have severe symptoms, particularly just prior to bleeding. Stopping progesterone too early, as most suggest, often leaves the women still feeling awful. If you wanted to use the progesterone as a contraceptive, you should start it ± days 10-12. As you're interested in having kids, please see our page on Pregnancy, and this one here too.

* Never felt "awful" when I began cycling off the progesterone from 2x's per day to 1x per day (20mg each dose). Instead, I got my menses on day 15 with severe back pain. Is this common when someone cycles down from (P)? Also, I should mention that my doctor did not advise me to cycle down to 1x per day. I thought of doing it on my own.

* Also to note (on this 3rd cycle after 15 days): I've been having unprotected intercourse, began with a brownish-discharge (my Dr. told me it was possibly "old blood") with a very light period for 2 days. Stopped the progesterone on day 17, thinking it was a period. I've been tracking my temperature for the past 6 days, and today (day 9 since getting the period on day 15), my temperature went up to 98.4 upon rising (regularly at 97.5 UR). Did I ovulate again? So strange...

Thanking you in advance for responding!

My Best,
SM

Sep 05, 2012
my dr. perscribed compounded progesterone
by: Anonymous

Looks like I'm getting 30 mg at each application, so over the course of the day 100 mg. I am going to call my dr. and see if she will increase this dosage to 200 at the least.
I have suffered with extremely bad PMS from the time I was 14. Very heavy periods, which is probably why my Ferritin levels are on the lowish side. Hopefully the bleeding will decrease so my levels will build and my thyroid meds will eventually be more effective.
I have suffered from ill health from as long as I can remember. Diagnosed with Morphea (form of scleroderma) which interestingly occurred after I was put on BC pills. I have never been comfortable on BC pills, the most severe symptom being very high blood pressure.
Lupus, Fibromyalgia, IBS, etc. etc. I truly believe low progesterone has been something that I have suffered from for many, many years.
I will keep a check on my Vit D levels as well.
Thank you again for such an informative site.
By far the most helpful resource I have found.
Trish

Sep 06, 2012
Confused
by: Wray

Hi SM Bleeding can be heavier, it's usually due to lining which hasn't been shed in previous cycles now coming away. And it does settle within a cycle or two. Brown blood is old blood. As you had a normal cycle length of 30 days, it seems a pity to disrupt this. So I do suggest you return to following it. It might get shorter in time, or not, but certainly initially it's best to follow it. Progesterone should be used at least twice a day, as levels begin dropping after about 13 hours. You are also using a very low amount, I'm delighted it's helped you, as I've found on the whole it causes nothing but trouble, leading in some instances to bad Oestrogen Dominance. I usually recommend 100-200mg/day, more if symptoms are severe. But as your weren't, the low amount seems to be enough. When starting on a low amount of progesterone, when increasing it slowly, when decreasing too fast, can all cause oestrogen dominance symptoms, hence your severe back pain. And the bleeding too. It's the drop in progesterone which allows the MMPs to start working on the lining to break it down. There's info about them on the menstruation page I gave you. I think that 2 day period you had on day 15 is due to using the progesterone incorrectly, it's going to take some time to settle back into it's old cycle. If you had ovulated it would have been strange, as it was day 24, a bit late. Unless you have a very long follicular phase, and too short a luteal phase. You'll only know once your cycle has normalised. Let me know how you get on with the change in cycle length. Take care Wray

Sep 06, 2012
my dr. perscribed compounded progesterone
by: Wray

Hi Trish Do you need to ask your doctor to increase the amount you use, or will you run out if you do increase it? 100mg/day is the least I'd recommend, but for someone with symptoms as severe as yours, I'm not sure even 200mg/day will be enough. For instance heavy bleeding responds to 400mg/day, plus taking at least 2000mg/day NAC (N-acetyl cysteine). Please see these comments here. And our page on Menstruation. Apart from the morphea, do you also have Lupus, Fibromyalgia, and IBS?! All these four scream out low vitamin D, have you had a test done, has anyone thought of checking it? Please have one. I know you say you take 10,000iu's per day, but with IBS you are probably not absorbing it well. And how long have you been taking it? Every 'autoimmune' disease that's been studied has been found to have low vitamin D levels. Low zinc has been found in scleroderma, oestrogen suppresses zinc, increases copper, progesterone does the reverse. These are a few papers about vitamin D. These on morphea/scleroderma, see here, here, here, here, here and here. These on lupus, see here, here, here, here, here, here and here. Continued below.

Sep 06, 2012
my dr. perscribed compounded progesterone Part 2
by: Wray

Hi Trish And more here, here and here. This on fibromyalgia, see here. And IBS, see here, here and here. I think I might be overloading you with papers, but these are on progesterone and lupus, see here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here. On IBS here, here and here. I'll probably give you indigestion too with all the above! Take care Wray

Sep 09, 2012
my dr. perscribed compounded progesterone
by: Anonymous

Thanks Wray,
I've been away from the computer for a few days, just saw your comments. I'll start your recommended reading right away.
My dr. checked my D levels a few months ago. She said they were "fine". I didn't get a copy of the labs, but I do believe I am low. I also take HCI with my meals and that has seemed to help with absorption issues as well.
I am noticing many improvements on progesterone as the days go by.
I am almost finished with my first bottle of progesterone and will call my dr. to ask for an increase. I don't think it will be a problem as she told me that "one can't overdose on progesterone".
Thanks for all of your guidance. I'll will check back in with you and let you know how it's going.
Thanks again Wray,
Trish

Sep 10, 2012
my dr. perscribed compounded progesterone
by: Wray

Hi Trish If you can, please get those vitamin D results from your doctor. They still go by the 'adequate' level of 30ng/ml if in the States, and even less in the UK, the NHS has set theirs are 20ng/ml. Neither of these are going to do anything. We only start storing the D when levels reach 40ng/ml. So pleased the progesterone is helping a bit, but if you can increase it I feel you would be further helped. Your doctors attitude to progesterone is wonderful news to me. I would appreciate hearing how you fare. Take care Wray

Sep 10, 2012
my dr. perscribed compounded progesterone
by: Anonymous

Thanks Wray,
I will keep you posted on my progress.
Yes, my Dr. seems like a gem; after so many years of searching, she has me on natural dessicated thyroid meds, and is treating me for estrogen dominance, which also seems to be helping my adrenal fatigue. So far, she is a blessing.
I will keep ingesting my 10,000 i.u.'s of D3 a day because I believe she is feeling safe on the low side...for so many years I haven't absorbed any nutrients thanks to untreated/under treated thyroid and estrogen dominance. I feel it is safe to err on the side of caution and try and get my levels up to a respectable level. But I will be sure to have her test next time I'm in as well as find out what exactly the levels are.
Thank you so much for your concern.
I will check back in as soon as I notice anymore change one way or another.
Thank you again for your kindness and dedication.
Trish

Sep 10, 2012
my dr. perscribed compounded progesterone
by: Wray

Hi Trish Bless you for the kind words! I would like to know how you get on. And specially your vitamin D levels, past and future. The vitamin D story fascinates me, I've seen so much healing take place when levels are high. Take care Wray

Sep 10, 2012
herpes outbreak due to progesterone use
by: Anonymous

Started taking progesterone and now having herpes outbreak. Haven't had any problems with this in years.
Could progesterone be the reason? I don't know if i should keep taking it and maybe it will get better?

Sep 10, 2012
herpes outbreak due to progesterone use
by: Wray

Hi there I would have to know how much progesterone you're using, but it appears too little. Initially it stimulates oestrogen, particularly if not enough is used. Oestrogen is an excitatory, inflammatory hormone, and can exacerbate any underlying allergies or disorders. We have more info about this on our Oestrogen Dominance page. I know of one man who applied the cream to his lips and his cold sore went. And if you are taking it, oral progesterone is the least effective Delivery system. I recommend using 100-200mg/day, more dependant on symptoms, see our page on How to use progesterone cream. Take care Wray

Sep 10, 2012
herpes outbreak due to progesterone use
by: Anonymous

200 mg cream a day.
so I should just take my antivirals and muddle through??
thxs!

Sep 11, 2012
herpes outbreak due to progesterone use
by: Wray

Hi there If you're using that much, and it's a cream too, then yes please 'muddle through'! But please get your vitamin D levels checked. Although not the same virus, but within the same herpes family of viruses, it's been found low vitamin D levels are a factor for chicken pox outbreaks, see here and here. Low vitamin D levels also reduce the benefit of progesterone. For more info on vitamin D levels, test kits etc see the Vitamin D Council, GrassrootsHealth, Birmingham Hospital and Vitamin D Links websites. Blood levels should be 70-100ng/ml (175-250nmol/L) and not the 30ng/ml (75nmol/L) most labs and doctors regard as adequate. The minimum daily dose should be 5000iu's per day, although the latest research indicates it should be 10,000iu's per day, see here. Take care Wray

Sep 11, 2012
Confused
by: SM

Hi Wray,

I'm now on day 30 of my cycle (assuming the 3 days of light bleeding around day 15 didn't count as a cycle).

I have been feeling very warm, with a waking temperature of 98.4-6 for many days. Even after ovulation it always goes back down.

I'm not feeling ill/sick.

Appetite is less.

Slightly bloated underneath naval area (very strange for me).

#1) Does this sound like early pregnancy?
#2) Do I continue taking the progesterone cream? I haven't stopped (2 doses a 20 mg)

Thank you in advance, Wray--I really appreciate your feedback.

My Best,
SM

Sep 11, 2012
Confused
by: Wray

Hi SM It's very difficult to know! Progesterone is thermogenic, so does raise temps. They will only drop once you stop using it at bleeding. Normal oral body temperature in adult men and women ranges between 33.2–38.2 °C (92–101 °F). Typical average temperatures are 37.0 °C (98.6 °F). In women it varies between the follicular and the luteal phase. During the follicular phase, i.e. from the first day of menstruation to ovulation, it ranges from 36.45 to 36.7 °C (97.6 to 98.1 °F). During the 12-14 day luteal phase, i.e. after ovulation to menstruation, temperature increases by 0.15 - 0.45 °C (0.2 - 0.9 °F) due to the increased metabolic rate caused by rapidly rising levels of progesterone. Temperature ranges between 36.7 - 37.3°C (98.1 - 99.2°F) during the luteal phase, but drops down to follicular levels within a few days of bleeding. The bloating is a sign of oestrogen too, it does cause water retention. But in case you are pregnant, don't stop the progesterone after the 14 days are up, only stop it once you bleed. I think I gave you the page on Pregnancy, this also explains what to do. Take care Wray

Sep 14, 2012
Confused
by: SM

Hi Wray,

Update: I'm spotting / having light menses today (18 days after the light menses on day 15 and **32 days after my last actual period**).

My original cycle (prior to starting progesterone) was every 30 days.

Temperature for the past 10 days has been 98.4-6 consistently and feeling warm all day long.

Temperature has now dropped 2 hours after waking and getting menses.

Prior to progesterone treatment, my temperature would slightly rise to barely 98.0 (if I was ovulating) and would drop back down within a day or so. I feel that I might be ovulating now because of how warm I feel after ovulating. Haven't felt that way in a while. Is this an accurate assessment?

Questions:

- I took one dose of the progesterone this morning (prior to getting menses) When should I begin taking the progesterone for fertility? My cycle feels so off.

- I feel like I've become Estrogen Dominant. Aches in lower back, difficulty loosing weight (never happened before), sore breasts, very bloated, heavy perspiration when working out (my clothes are saturated in water/sweat). No food cravings...

- As mentioned above, I do remain elevated temperature wise after ovulation. I presume this is a good thing? And could possibly showcase the effectiveness of progesterone therapy for ovulation?

- I'm so confused and am reaching out to you because I feel you might know more than prescribing physician. Should I retest my hormones?

Thank you in advance Wray! I really appreciate it!

SM

Sep 14, 2012
Confused
by: Wray

Hi SM The drop in temps once you're bleeding is understandable, as progesterone has dropped. It will continue to be low, as oestrogen decreases temps, until you ovulate, or begin the progesterone again. Temps shouldn't drop once you've ovulated, they should continue rising slightly until bleeding again. Of if pregnant will remain high. Those figures I gave you in my previous reply show the increase. I suggest you hold off trying to fall pregnant until your cycle has established itself again. The symptoms you describe are due to oestrogen. I did wonder if the amount you are using was enough, as I normally recommend 100-200mg/day. We do have a page on Breast Tenderness you could look through. There would be no change in how to use the progesterone for fertility, as you are following your cycle. It's only women who use it daily to suppress the excess oestrogen they have, who need to get back to following the cycle. Progesterone used before ovulation acts like a contraceptive, without the adverse side effects of course. Take care Wray

Nov 08, 2012
Crazy periods! Crazy antepartum and post partum!
by: Mollie L.

Hi, it seems that when I became pregnant with my second son, I became a crazy anxious mess, from the day I became pregnant I had severe depression and anxiety. Now my son is 6 months. It seems that the week before, and week of my period, I am a jittery shaking mess. I am like crazy with anxiety, severe crying fits, etc. Then its like a week after my period, I am fine for 2 weeks. THen the whole thing starts over again the week before my period. What's wrong with me? I got a progesterone blood test the last day of my period and it was 0.4ng/ml. Any advice would help. My doc thinks HRT is fooey. I am willing to do anything to function. Right now I am on xanax. Have tried zoloft, lexapro, cymbalta, and now paxil. Help!

Nov 08, 2012
Crazy periods! Crazy antepartum and post partum!
by: Wray

Hi Mollie It was evident your progesterone was too low during your Pregnancy, or possibly oestrogen too high. There's more info on this page here. Now there's nothing wrong with you, beyond a severe progesterone deficiency, causing severe PMS. They must have been daft to check your progesterone on the last day of your period. Of course it would be low, it drops to it's lowest level just prior to bleeding. And doesn't rise again until just prior to ovulation, and should continue to rise during the luteal phase. A test should only be done ± 7 days after ovulation or before bleeding, i.e. mid-luteal phase. After this it begins dropping, commonly known as progesterone withdrawal. Oestrogen also drops then too, but often it's at a much higher level, so the ratio becomes severely imbalanced. Hence your adverse symptoms. I'm relieved your doctor thinks HRT is fooey! So do I, and more. I normally recommend 100-200mg/day progesterone, but judging by the state you're in I feel you will need at least 400mg/day, possibly more. It is possible to wean off the drugs, but please do so slowly, see our page on Natural Antidepressants. This gives a list of nutrients which all help. There's a further page on Anxiety you could read. I feel you will need to take some of these nutrients, as progesterone alone is not going to help enough. Not unless you use the amounts Dr Dalton did with her depressed, anxious patients, which was anything from 800-2400mg/day. But this becomes quite costly. Please have a vitamin D test done, as a lack of this not only reduces the benefits of progesterone, but causes anxiety and depression too. For more info on vitamin D levels, test kits etc see the Vitamin D Council, GrassrootsHealth and Birmingham Hospital. Blood levels should be 70-100ng/ml (175-250nmol/L) and not the 30ng/ml (75nmol/L) most labs and doctors regard as adequate. Continued below

Nov 08, 2012
Crazy periods! Crazy antepartum and post partum! Part 2
by: Wray

Hi Mollie The minimum daily dose should be 5000iu's per day, although recent research indicates it should be 10,000iu's per day, see here. We do have a page on How to use progesterone cream which gives more info. You might like to read these comments from women who had to use high amounts, for a variety of reasons, see here, here, here and here. Take care Wray

Jan 21, 2013
Ratio
by: Anonymous

Hi there

I am a 45 year old woman and I just had my labs done and my Dr. has not given me my Ratio between my Estrogen, Progesterone and Testosterone. So I am hoping I can give you the results and you can tell me.
Estrodial is 145
Progesterone 0.9
Testosterone 27

Is this ok?

Jan 23, 2013
Ratio
by: Wray

Hi there I'm assuming the results are from a blood test not saliva. If this is the case then your ratio of P:E2 is 6:1 very low. We've found from Saliva Tests we run that the ratio should be 600:1 and over to feel well. According to Medline, the female range of testosterone should be between 30 - 95 ng/dL. But it could be your lab has a different range. We do have a page on Hormone Testing you could look through. and if interested in using progesterone, please look through our page on How to use progesterone cream. Take care Wray

Jan 12, 2014
help
by: Anonymous

I am a 35 year old healthy active female that is having issues when I start my period. The day I start my period (which by the way has become very sparse)I get very light headed, clammy, loose all color in my skin, will get shaky and sweaty and will pass out. I have tried eating when this happens or drinking Gatorade and nothing seems to help. My cramps are very intense and my flow is not heavy I would say it is pretty normal. I also am having issue with facial hair growth on my chin and excess hair growth on other parts of my body! Losing weight has also been nearly impossible, I am not overweight 5'8 and around 140 in weight but the scale will not go down only up! I am currently going to the doctor on this issue. My prolactin levels were pretty low and I am waiting for my progesterone levels to come back. Other than that all other test have been in a normal range. I also had a MRI on my pituitary gland and that too came back normal. Can anyone help?

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