Progesterone has a major role in our lives as it is essential for regulating blood sugar, developing intelligence, bone building and much, much more and, fortunately for us our bodies make it constantly. But how much do we know about this important menopausal hormone?
What Is It?
The hormone progesterone is secreted by the ovary in the latter half of the menstrual cycle, although this does not mean that it is exclusively a female hormone. In fact there is not much difference in the amount that men and women have in their bodies.
It develops when the body turns cholesteron into pregnenolone. The pregnenonone is then converted to progesterone and finally, the body makes many other hormones from the progesterone, including the estrogens and testosterone. Estrogen reduces greatly in menopause and progesterone starts decreasing in perimenopause and. Many women have used progesterone creams during this time. Your doctor may give oral progesterine for ten to fourteen days each month to try and prevent erratic bleeding.
Progesterone has been around for a very long time, about 500 million years in fact and that demonstrates just how important it is to a great many living creatures. It can be found in fishes, reptiles, birds and mammals, including human beings of course. It plays no part in the secondary sexual characteristics which develop at puberty. It is the precursor to the sex hormones estrogen and testosterone
Of course,Therefore, it must be appreciated how a progesterone deficiency would have serious implications on many functions of the body. Similarly, progesterone therapy can be effective in treating a wide range of health problems.
How Is It Used In Hormone Replacement Therapy?
Progesterones in medications are usually made from plant sources. When used in Hormone Therapy, there are two primary types of progestogen. One which most closely resembles progesterone and the other derived from testosterone. If any side effects are experienced on one type, changing the type or route of progestogen may help.
Which Symptoms Does It help?
Progesterone can be effective when used to regulate abnormal bleeding. If given continuously with postmenopausal hormone replacement therapy, progesterone will prevent menstrual sloughing as long as there is a small amount of estrogen present
How To Administer
It can be taken orally, as a vaginal suppository or as a cream. Price and convenience will have an influence on the method chosen and, absorption and longetivity will vary dependent on the type used.
When taken orally in tablet form between one and four hours in the peak absorption period. The pills should be taken with food in order to increase absorption. Orally on liquid form, such as oil, means that the peak absorption time is at approximately twelve hours after administration. Vaginal suppositories, peak absorption is around four hours.
Skin creams do not absorb through the skin very well but alcohol-based gels are more effective, with application recommended once a day. As with any medication, the dosage of progesterone must be carefully regulated as too much can cause excessive fatigue. Vaginal dryness can also be a side effect, as progesterone counteracts the lubrication effect of estrogens.