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Thread: Estrace cream/return of AF

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    Unhappy Estrace cream/return of AF

    Hi, I have an 8.5 week old little guy and am breastfeeding exclusively, although I do pump once every day or two to make sure I have an "emergency supply." He also does take a pacifier from time to time, usually after eating extensively.

    Anyway, just trying to give you a good picture of what bfing looks like for me. Now, to the problem, if it is one. I had a 3rd degree tear + episiotomy with him (first baby), and at my 6 week appt my doctor used silver nitrate to burn away some of the scar tissue. She prescribed Estrace cream to help speed the healing. I have been applying one gram nightly.

    This morning I noticed some spotting. My first thought is, eek! Is it AF, or am I having some terrible bleeding issue from the tear? Could it possibly be my period already, and if so, would it be a result of the Estrace?

    Secondly, I did research on Estrace and it repeatedly says don't take during pregnancy or breastfeeding. I did take it some during pregnancy to help with extreme dryness, so figured it would be okay for breastfeeding, but now I also read that it can dry up milk supply. I have an oversupply and haven't noticed much of a difference, but I really don't want it to become an undersupply! Help!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Default Re: Estrace cream/return of AF

    If this is your period already, it's very reasonable that the Estrace would be to blame. It could also be the extreme tail end of your lochia. I guess the only way to tell is if it comes back in a month! Either way, any mom who is using supplemental estrogen should be cautious about milk supply because, yeah, it's not recommended for nursing moms, and she should also be cautious about birth control because breastfeeding is much less likely to provide reliable protection against pregnancy.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    34

    Default Re: Estrace cream/return of AF

    Thanks, mommal. I'm thinking I should maybe quit the Estrace, since hubby and I use NFP and I really don't want to screw with my hormones and end up pregnant. I just hope I can get healed up soon!

  4. #4

    Default Re: Estrace cream/return of AF

    Estrogen is known to suppress milk production, and it is absorbed through the skin from the cream, but I'm not sure how the amount of estrogen from the cream compares to the amount you'd get from taking birth control pills.

    But you've been using it 2 (2.5?) weeks now and haven't noticed a change in your milk supply?
    Karen
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  5. #5
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    Jul 2012
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    Default Re: Estrace cream/return of AF

    I actally had my "6 week" appt on Aug. 9, which was during the 7th week, so I've only used the Estrace a few times. I don't think it could be lochia because I've been dry for weeks. I called my dr. this afternoon and she said the dose is too low to cause a return of my period or reduce milk supply.

    I'm just disappointed and a little worried because most women I know went without a period for many months, and for some reason it kind of makes me feel like I've somehow failed breastfeeding, even though I haven't used formula and plan to exclusively feed breastmilk as long as I can.

  6. #6
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    May 2006
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    Default Re: Estrace cream/return of AF

    Getting your period back doesn't have anything to do with breastfeeding failure. It's just a quirk of your body- some moms get their periods back quickly, some go for months and months without them, some don't get them back until their babies are completely weaned.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    34

    Default Re: Estrace cream/return of AF

    Thanks. I know it's a silly thought; I was just afraid that the return to menses would mean that I'm gonna dry up sooner than I'd like. But that's likely an entirely different issue for a different thread!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Default Re: Estrace cream/return of AF

    I got my period back at 8 weeks PP, and my son is still nursing at 21 months.
    K. Sophia - Mama to my little lactivore, the amazing Mr. X (11/10).

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
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    34

    Default Re: Estrace cream/return of AF

    Thanks. I'm gonna try lowering the dose drastically and/or quitting it, and hopefully I'll continue both lactating and healing.

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