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  • HRT for women

    I know a lot has been discussed on here about rosacea being hormonal - a lot of it has been me talking. But, this might be something for many of us to follow as it progresses.

    Lawsuit tests alleged HRT-cancer link

    03:45 PM CST on Tuesday, February 7, 2006

    Many have lost friends and relatives to breast cancer

    It has taken Carole Clements years to have something to sing about again.

    Five years ago, she was diagnosed with breast cancer which she now believes was caused by the medicine she took for hot flashes.

    "It makes you mad. You think it caused something. I never would have had this if I hadn't taken this medicine," she says.

    The potential danger of estrogen and progesterone together became national news three years ago when the Women's Health Initiative linked the drug combination to breast cancer, heart disease and stroke.

    Many menopausal women took the HRT combo for years.

    Dallas attorney Les Weisbrod says the drug makers misled patients.

    "I mean, why not just give them a revolver with a bullet in it and say 'let's play Russian roulette with this drug.' We don't know what's going to happen to you if you take it for five or ten years. That's wrong."

    He represents 800 women and will try one of the first of these cases in the country this summer.

    In hindsight, Carole Clements wishes she would have toughed out the hot flashes.

    "It couldn't be any worse than taking the chemo, radiation."

    She's now looking forward to putting all the pain behind her.
    *Avoiding triggers is like trying to dodge raindrops in a monsoon.*

    My Blog - http://rosaceablog.moonfruit.com/

  • #2
    How interesting Kelli. HRT is on my list of possibles to consider for Rosacea but I haven't done much reading on it. Thanks for bringing this to our attention. At least that's one thing I can now strike off my ever growing list!

    Red
    Currently trying: Apr 06 Bee Wilder's Candida (natural healing) Diet; May 06 Home made red LED array; Aug 06 ZZ ointment.

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    • #3
      Some say that natural progesterone (no synthetics and no estrogen) can help. It is the estrogen that will get you.
      - Rachel Rose

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      • #4
        I don't know that I'd jump to striking it off the list, but I really think some following the research that will be found with this trial could be very interesting. I plan on following along as much as possible.
        *Avoiding triggers is like trying to dodge raindrops in a monsoon.*

        My Blog - http://rosaceablog.moonfruit.com/

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        • #5
          Yes, you're right Kelli. But I would so like to make my list smaller!
          Currently trying: Apr 06 Bee Wilder's Candida (natural healing) Diet; May 06 Home made red LED array; Aug 06 ZZ ointment.

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          • #6
            Well, bioidentical estrogen cured my rosacea and I couldn't live without it. The HRT estrogen that they are talking about causing cancer is estrogen from HORSE URINE combined with an artificial progesterone. All the studies have been done with Premarin, a Wyeth-Ayerst drug that is synonymous with estrogen in doctors' minds, but is not the same thing at all. The major ingredient in Premarin is equilin, a horse estrogen that is 1000 times stronger than human estrogen. If human estrogen were so dangerous to humans, pregnant women would be getting the most breast cancer, as estrogen skyrockets at that time. Yet women with the most pregnancies suffer the least breast cancer in later life.

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            • #7
              Thanks for the info Irishgenes.

              HRT is still on my list of things to consider but I haven't done much reading on it. That ever growing list! Aggh!

              Jen
              Currently trying: Apr 06 Bee Wilder's Candida (natural healing) Diet; May 06 Home made red LED array; Aug 06 ZZ ointment.

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              • #8
                You're right, irishgenes. They haven't really studied the bioidentical estrogen. I've been on the Vivelle patch for five years (since I was 30-I had a hysterectomy due to painful endometriosis), which is the bioidentical estrogen and my gyn said all those studies were basically done on Premarin (which I've always refused to take--EEEWWWW!!).

                Do you use patches or compounded estrogen, if you don't mind my asking?
                <---------- Here is an acceptable pink nose. Mine is not.

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                • #9
                  I tried patches, but they were just not strong enough for me. I didn't absorb it well for some reason, and I tried Estraderm and the Vivelle dot. Then I took compounded capsules (Tri-est) for years. About 3 months ago, I started the compounded gel, and that is what cured me of rosacea, which I have only had since age 58 when I lost a lot of weight (and thus a major source of my own estrogen). The reason the gel is so good is that you can figure out your own dose. Some days I need more than others. Just a tiny difference in dose (.05 mg.) can be the difference between bad symptoms and no symptoms for me.

                  Wyeth-Ayerst is so upset over women dropping Premarin due to the recent studies showing increased cancer risk (though the increased risk is very small and probably related to the Provera), that they are trying to shut down the bioidentical hormone compounders by claiming that women don't need individual dosing of hormones, and that the bioidentical hormones have not been proven safe. DUH! It is what we have had in our bodies all our lives, a hormone designed by God! I just got a letter from the Women's International Pharmacy, my compounder, telling me to write my congressmen because Wyeth, in cahoots with the FDA and the OB-GYN Association, are threatening to take away our bioidentical compounded hormones. I imagine the (mostly male) gynecologists don't like all these patients suddenly demanding bioidentical hormones. They are set in their ways and it is so easy and quick just to write the same prescription for everyone. If these men had a sudden huge drop in their testosterone, they would see what it is like!

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                  • #10
                    Irish,

                    What specifically do you take?

                    Also this is upsetting:

                    Originally posted by irishgenes
                    Wyeth, in cahoots with the FDA and the OB-GYN Association, are threatening to take away our bioidentical compounded hormones. I imagine the (mostly male) gynecologists don't like all these patients suddenly demanding bioidentical hormones. They are set in their ways and it is so easy and quick just to write the same prescription for everyone.
                    I think it goes deeper than that. I think the issues are about money and some patriarchal/misogynist control over women. Something similar is happening with accutance. Men have the "blue" effect on viagra but I don't see them in any big hurry to pull that one off the shelves. In fact, tax dollars have spent to give it to convicted sex offenders.

                    Originally posted by irishgenes
                    If these men had a sudden huge drop in their testosterone, they would see what it is like!
                    Castration would do the trick. Then instead of horse urine we could give them horse sh*t. Of course, it might not be bioidentical to the sh*t they're full of....

                    ...but, I digress. Thanks for sharing all your info and keeping us posted. I think you've helped many women here whose symptoms are due to hormonal instability.

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                    • #11
                      I went onto HRT several months after the flushing and redness started. I'm 51 and was having uncomfortable but manageable hot flashes. But after this Rosacea thing kicked in, my hot flashes started feeling like a torch on my skin, radiating from inside. I could not live that way, and I couldn't differentiate which sytmptoms were hot flash and which were
                      Rosacea flares. One made the other worse and vise versa.
                      I finally gave in and went on estrodoil which is bio identical estrogen. I use the new vaginal ring called Femring and it only has to be changed every 90 days. It's working so well for me. The benefits of the ring or creams or patches vs. taking pills is that your liver does not have to process it.
                      It hasn't made my Rosacea better, but it has calmed the fire raging in my body, but not the fire on my face. At least when my face is flaring the rest of my body doesn't go with it.
                      I loooove my estrodoil! I'm on it for life, risk or no risk.
                      Roxanne

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                      • #12
                        I loooove my estrodoil! I'm on it for life, risk or no risk.
                        I second that!
                        <---------- Here is an acceptable pink nose. Mine is not.

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                        • #13
                          What if you're not going through menopause but just feel like your hormones are "off balance"? I think I'll do some research into this and see what I come up with. I welcome any feedback and am so glad to hear of your results.

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                          • #14
                            Flareface, I made a post to you on the "Interesting Article by Dr. Kligman" thread. I gave reasons why the ring may be the reason you have not received any help for your rosacea with HRT. You may want to read that. It's all a question of the right dosage and form of estrogen. I looked up FemRing, and I see that it is estradiol acetate. Your doctor may have told you that is bioidentical, but it is not. Only Estring is bioidentical in a vaginal ring, according to the National Women's Health Resource Center. It has to say just "estradiol" to be bioidentical.

                            Callien, I think the best authors for books on menopause and perimenopause are Dr. Elizabeth Vliet and Dr. Uzzi Reiss. Most of what I know, I have learned from them. Today I found a new book on Amazon which I just ordered, so I don't know how good it will be, but it sure sounds good! It is called: "The Hormonally Vulnerable Woman: Relief at last for PMS, mood swings, fatigue, hair loss, adult acne, unwanted hair, female pain, migraine, weight gain, ... all the problems of perimenopause" by Dr. Geoffrey Redmond.

                            And specifically, I take estradiol and estrone compounded gel rubbed into my inner thighs. I have a .5 mg. per gm estradiol gel prescription, and a gm of the gel is 1/4 tsp. I bought "pinch, dash, & smidgen" teaspoons from ebay in order to get 1/8, 1/16, and 1/32 measurements so I can add small amounts as needed. I use it twice a day, as I can't seem to get by with once a day dosing. You can get the estradiol and estrone together combined with estriol, but I recently found that estriol was making my breasts hurt, so I deleted it. I had read that estriol was 1000 times weaker in its breast effect, which just goes to show that every woman is individual in her hormone response. Later I may combine the estradiol and estrone together in one prescription, as that is cheaper, but right now I am fine-tuning the dose, and taking them separately allows me to see what each can do. Estradiol is about 12X stronger than estrone, so you can take much more estrone without getting breast pain and bloat. I found that taking estradiol alone did not stop all my symptoms--I need estrone as the "reservoir" supply of estrogen. Estrone can be converted into estradiol as needed.

                            You made me laugh, Callien, with your comments about bioidentical horse sh*t for men!

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                            • #15
                              I probably shouldn't say that bioidentical estrogen gel has "cured" my rosacea. I still have the gene, and rosacea is still lurking. I should say it is being well-controlled to the point of being gone nearly all the time. The only time I have any problem with it is once in a while at 3 PM (an estrogen dip time every day), I will start to get dry eyes and itchy, scaley eyelids. Strangely enough, that is the first symptom of rosacea that I ever had, back when I was in my late 30's and my estrogen first started to decline. I didn't realize it was rosacea and didn't even know that my eyelids were flushing. I thought I had a make-up allergy and would use cortisone cream. My eyelid problem would then go away in a day or two and not come back for months. I thought back then that the cortisone cream had cured me, but now I realize that the itchy, scaley eyelids were "curing" themselves as soon as my estrogen level climbed back to normal. Today, whenever I get this dry eye, itchy-scaley eyelid problem at 3 PM, I rub on a little more estrogen gel and it is all gone in an hour.

                              It is the first symptom to appear when my estrogen is just a little bit below normal. The more the estrogen dips below normal, the more symptoms appear. When I have gotten really, really low in estrogen, I have become bed-ridden with migraine, high blood pressure, pounding heart, and the shakes, like a drug addict in withdrawal.

                              My husband recently got a call from a friend who was taken to the ER with symptoms just like mine (the severe symptoms, not rosacea) which occured at about 4 PM. The doctors did a battery of tests on him and could not find anything wrong. My husband told him about me and suggested he have a testosterone blood level test. He did, and it came back as ZERO! He is about 65 and has been suffering with chronic depression and osteoporosis for years, but no doctor ever checked his sex hormone levels. So there is a possibility that in men who first get symptoms of rosacea in mid-life, it could be due to declining testosterone levels. Women need estrogen and men need testosterone---viva le difference! Of course, too much testosterone or the conversion of it to DHT can cause an over-production of sebum and acne, so that is a problem. But I do think testosterone helps control men's temperature regulation and thus flushing, as men who are castrated for prostate cancer can get hot flushes, too.

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