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would it be safe to take DHEA when I am on Vivelle .025 and 100 mg Prometrium?

By January 8, 2010 - 6:18pm
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I am BHRT now for over 6 months with the Prometrium helping with my sleep. Not sure that the Vivelle really helps me with anything even with the different dosages; so I decided to take the lowest dose .025 with the 100 mg Prometrium. I still have slight nightsweats and foggy thinking and memory.
Could DHEA help balance my hormones?

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HERWriter Guide

Dear 54 and Going

Thanks for your question and welcome!

Empowher describes DHEA as "a natural steroid hormone precursor (prohormone) produced from cholesterol by the adrenal glands, the gonads, adipose tissue, brain and in the skin. DHEA is the precursor of androstenedione, which can undergo further conversion to produce testosterone and the estrogens estrone and estradiol."

According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, DHEA is gaining popularity amongst menopausal women. Here is an overview from them of DHEA and menopausal women :

"DHEA has gained some popularity among perimenopausal women. They often used the supplement to alleviate symptoms of menopause, including decreased sex drive, diminished skin tone, and vaginal dryness. In one recent clinical study, DHEA supplements did raise levels of certain hormones in post-menopausal women. Although DHEA supplementation has been reported to produce beneficial effects in women with adrenal insufficiency, DHEA supplementation in healthy pre- and postmenopausal women is controversial. Clinical studies have yielded conflicting results regarding its beneficial effects on sexual function, metabolism, and overall well-being. Further research is needed to better understand the efficacy and safety of DHEA supplementation for the treatment of sex hormone insufficiency in women.

Those who believe in the use of DHEA claim that it relieves the menopausal symptoms described above without increasing the risk of breast cancer or cancer of the endometrium (lining to the uterus). The risk of each of these cancers may be increased with regular, prescription hormone replacement therapy. There is no proof, however, that DHEA does not stimulate these cancers as well. It is possible for DHEA to become either estrogen or testosterone in the body, which may be dangerous for women or men with a history of hormone sensitive cancers such as breast or prostate cancer. Women with breast cancer tend to have low levels of this hormone in their bodies. DHEA replacement may lead to either inhibition or stimulation of growth of breast cancer cells."

Ask your health care provider if they have other patients who have chosen this route and what the outcome was. And make sure you inform him/her of any medications you are on, including the BHRT/ Prometrium.

Did someone recommend you take DHEA or is it something you have researched and felt was a good option to help you with your symptoms?

January 9, 2010 - 7:32am
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