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By the way, doctor: Is vaginal estrogen safe?
Q. My doctor prescribed a low-dose vaginal estrogen cream, applied twice a week, for atrophic vaginitis. I've heard this dose is so low that it carries no health risk. Do you agree?
A. Estrogen cream and other vaginal estrogens are very effective treatments for atrophic vaginitis, a condition that's common in postmenopausal women and results from a drop in estrogen levels. Estrogen loss can lead to thinning (atrophy) of the cells lining the vagina and urethra. As a result, women may develop vaginal dryness, itching, and pain with intercourse, as well as a high risk of urinary and vaginal infections.
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