Is there a way to increase estrogen levels after a hysterectomy?

Published: December 12, 2012
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Dear Dr. Teitelbaum,

I had a total hysterectomy earlier this year (leaving my ovaries intact). For the last 6 weeks I've woken up 6-8 times a night drenched in sweat, absolutely on fire. I understand that the ovaries can go into a "sleep" mode when you've had a hysterectomy and it is lack of estrogen that causes these god-awful hot flashes and night sweats (oh yeah, due to the memory loss I forgot to mention the daytime hot flashes - sheesh). Is there any natural way "wake up" the ovaries? Is it possible to make them start producing estrogen again? What would be your best recommendation for me?

I thank you in advance for your time.

Nancy

Answer

Hi, Nancy.

Estrogen deficiency within 2 years of a hysterectomy is common, and suspected to be from disruption of blood flow to the ovaries. This usually takes longer than 2-3 months to develop, and its relatively quick onset raises a chance that the ovarian tissue is stunned and may recover. Beyond a good multivitamin with antioxidants, and a handful of edamame each day and the herb black cohosh (the latter 2 to decrease hot flashes after 1-2 months), I am not aware of much to help ovary healing. If it were me, I would take a bioidentical estrogen/progesterone cream. If it helped the hot flashes, I would stay with it. If not, I would look for hidden infections, especially candida.

Hope this is helpful.

L&B,

Dr. T

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