FAQs for Women

1. Question: What is the difference between natural and synthetic progesterone?

Answer: Progesterone was first crystallized in 1934, and today is available from plant sources. Natural progesterone is an exact chemical duplicate of the progesterone that is normally produced by the ovaries. Synthetic progesterone, called progestogen, mimics the action of the progesterone, but the body does not respond in the same way. Studies have shown that progestogen actually reduces the level of progesterone in the blood stream.

2. Question: Are there side effects with natural progesterone?

Answer: Natural progesterone combines with progesterone receptor sites, and elicits biological effects without many of the undesirable effects that are seen with the synthetics forms. Perhaps the only disadvantage to natural progesterone is that it is short-acting and to maintain adequate blood levels it has to be dosed four times daily. A small number of women may experience transient lightheadedness or drowsiness.

3. Question: How does oral natural progesterone work?

Answer: The oral route of progesterone administration has long been considered impractical because of poor absorption and short biological half life. Contrary to traditional teachings, recent reports ** confirm that significant serum progesterone levels can be achieved with new modifications in the preparation of progesterone for oral administration, including micronized and dissolution in oils

**Absorption of oral progesterone is influenced by vehicle and particle size, “Joel T. Hargrove,M.D., Wayne S. Maxon, M.D., and Anne Colston Wentz, M.D., American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, October, 1989.

4. Question: Is the oral form of progesterone approved by the F.D.A.?

Answer: Natural micronized progesterone has F.D.A. approval. The oral form of natural progesterone is compounded from a physician’s prescription by a licensed pharmacist using F.D.A. approved ingredients. Therefore, it does not require separate F.D.A. approval.

5. Question: Isn’t it true that natural progesterone taken orally is destroyed by stomach acid? How does the oral progesterone you compound achieve adequate blood levels?

Answer: Natural progesterone in powder form is destroyed by stomach acid. But, when compounded in an oil base, the progesterone is so firmly held by the oil base that it is actually absorbed through the lymphactic system first, thereby allowing a couple of passes through the the body before being cleared via the liver.

6. Question: What is Progesterone and what is its relationship to estrogen?

Answer: Progesterone is one of two primary hormones produced by the female body. When a woman’s monthly cycle is functioning correctly, estrogen is the dominant hormone during the first two weeks after the start of her menstrual cycle. In response to ovulation, estrogen levels drop and progesterone levels rise and assume dominance for the final two weeks of the month. When progesterone levels drop the next menstrual cycle begins in about 48 hours. Progesterone is used by the body for the production of estrogen and cortisone.

7. Question: What are some of the antagonists to the production and utilization of Natural Progesterone?

Answer: Animals in industrialized countries, especially the U.S., are routinely fed synthetic hormones and eat grain and grasses that are laden with pesticides. These synthetic compounds are concentrated in the fat of the meat and dairy products sold commercially.

Additionally, synthetic hormones sold by prescription and a wide variety of petrochemical compounds are also consumed by women. These chemical compounds are refereed to as xeno-estrogens or xeno-biotics and have been shown to interfere with the production and utilization of natural progesterone.

8. Question: What is Estrogen Dominance?

Answer: When progesterone levels fail to reach the normal 20 – 25 mg. during the final two weeks of a woman’s monthly cycle then estrogen is unopposed for the entire month and this condition is referred to as “Estrogen Dominance.” Interestingly, the symptoms of PMS & menopause and the conditions of infertility & osteoporosis have been shown to be the result of “Estrogen Dominance” relative to an insufficiency of progesterone.

9. Question: Do post menopausal women still produce estrogen and progesterone?

Answer: After menopause estrogen production decreases by about 40%. In other words the female body still produces estrogen at about 60% of pre-menopause levels. Because progesterone is the biological precursor for the production of estrogen, it is the natural choice for menopausal women as well as for pre-menopausal women to enjoy optimal health.

10. Question: What are the conditions for which Natural Progesterone cream will benefit a woman?

Answer: There are approximately 150 identified symptoms of PMS and significantly fewer symptoms associated with menopause. Most women with these two conditions respond well to natural progesterone, especially when they reduce their consumption of the antagonist to progesterone discussed above.

Because progesterone is the “Pro-Gestational” hormone, it is the primary necessary hormone for conception and full term pregnancy.

In a three year study of 63 post-menopausal women with osteoporosis, Women using transdermal progesterone cream experienced an average 7-8% bone mass density increase the first year, 4-5% the second year and 3-4% the third year! Untreated women in this age category typically lose 1.5% bone mass density per year!!! These results have not been found with any other form of hormone replacement therapy or dietary supplementation!

11. Question: Why is a premium quality Progesterone cream superior to capsules or suppositories?

Answer: Nature did not intend women to put hormones into their stomachs. Consequently, about 80% of orally administered progesterone is intercepted by the liver and passed out of the body, unused. Progesterone in suppository form is also intercepted by the liver and bound up by the wax vehicle. In either case, because there is no sound basis for putting an extra burden on the liver, informed women have chosen to use a transdermal cream which is almost 100% biologically available, as shown by salivary hormone assays.

12. Question: Why Progesterone; Isn’t Mexican Wild Yam enough?

Answer: A component of Yam (diosgenin) was, at one time, thought to be converted in the body to progesterone but that has been proven to be unsubstantiated. In fact, while it has certain health benefits, there are no published studies that would allow one to conclude that Yam will increase progesterone levels in humans or animals. Only supplemental Natural Progesterone has been demonstrated to increase serum and saliva progesterone levels in women, a fact that is verified by ample clinical and published scientific research.

13. Question: Are there any reported side effects associated with Progesterone?

Answer: Yes. The Physician’s Desk Reference lists a long list of side effects and contraindications for what is commonly referred to as progesterone. According to a second quarter news report in 1996, progesterone increases a woman’s risk for female specific cancers. Significantly, the progesterone that has side effects is the synthetic progesterone (progestin) or Progesterone Acetate. Unlike synthetic progesterone (progestin or progesterone acetate), however, there are no reports of any significant side effects or health problems associated with natural progesterone.

14. QUESTION: What are the names of some FEMALE HORMONE medications you compound?

  • Natural micronized PROGESTERONE
  • Estrone
  • Estriol
  • Estradiol
  • DHEA
  • Methyltestosterone
  • Testosterone
  • 5-Hydroxytryptophan
  • Pregnenolone
  • Combinations of the above

15. Question: Can you help me if I am currently experiencing unwanted side effects from manufactured medications?

Answer: Many patients have unwanted side effects from manufactured hormone medications due to fillers, dyes or the type of drug derivative. Specialty compounding can offer patients NATURAL MICRONIZED HORMONES, such as PROGESTERONE, as an alternative.

Most patients experience fewer side effects and can work with their physician to adjust the prescription strength to meet their health needs. “The advantages of natural progesterone have become evident….due to an increasing dissatisfaction among women taking the synthetic Hormone Replacement Therapy regimens.”

What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About MENOPAUSE, The Breakthrough Book on Natural Progesterone. Lee, John R., M.D. Warner Times, Inc. 1996, page 66.

16. Question: Can I read about these ingredients somewhere?

Answer: You can read about estrogen and progesterones in many sources. The most recent one we are aware of is a book “What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Menopause: The Breakthrough Book on Natural Progesterone”, Author: Dr. John R. Lee, M.D. Publisher: Warner Books, Inc. May 1996.

17. Question: What is NATURAL PROGESTERONE?

Answer: “Progesterone is one of two main hormones, the other being estrogen, made by the ovaries of menstruating women.” Natural progesterone comes from “wild yam”.

18. Question: How can you help if I am currently cutting my tablets to get the correct dose?

Answer: Many patients cut their tablets to obtain a dose appropriate for their condition because the manufactured prescription drug is not available in the correct strength for the patient. Prescription Specialties can provide a dosage form, such as a capsule, liquid, suppository or cream, which has the correct strength of the drug the physician prescribed.

19. What dosage forms can these medications be made into?

Answer: Capsules & Creams & Vaginal Suppositories

20. Question: What is oral natural MICRONIZED Progesterone?

Answer: Widely accepted as a better alternative for hormone replacement than Medroxyprogesterone •Better tolerated with distinct advantages over commonly manufactured progesterone (medroxyprogesterone) •Has a favorable effect on cholesterol when used in combination with estrogen •Widely used in vaginal suppositories for the treatment of infertility and miscarriages

(Reference: “Effects of Estrogen or Estrogen/Progestin Regimens on Heart Disease Risk Factors in Postmenopausal Women”, JAMA, January 18, 1995-Vol.273, No.3 )

21. Question: Can I get these types of services at my local pharmacy?

Answer: Most pharmacies will not do compounding because they do not have the skills, time, equipment, or staff to manage the special demands of the patients and physicians. Prescription Specialties has a uniquely trained staff and specially equipped laboratory to provide compounding services.

22. Question: How do I use your services?

Answer: In order for us to compound a medication for a patient, we must receive a prescription in writing or by phone from your physician. You or your physician can call us about your current or new prescription and we can discuss the options available to you. We can then fill your prescription and mail it directly to your home. Different mailing options are available.

23. Question: How do I find out more about your services and how it can help me with my hormone replacement medication?
Answer: hrt_callus (630) 355-6400