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Estrogen Cream Improves Urinary and Sexual Symptoms in Pre-Menopausal Women with IC/BPS

Gardella B, Iacobone AD, Porru D, Musacchi V, Dominoni M, Tinelli C, Spinillo A, Nappi RE. Effect of local estrogen therapy (LET) on urinary and sexual symptoms in premenopausal women with interstitial cystitis/bladder pain syndrome (IC/BPS). Gynecol Endocrinol. 2015 Jul 31:1-5. [Epub ahead of print]

This study included 34 pre-menopausal women with interstitial cystitis/bladder pain syndrome (IC/BPS), most of whom (32/34, or 94%) reported having vulvodynia, chronic vulvar pain. All women were treated with an estrogen-containing cream (estriol 0.5 mg) to see if the intervention would improve urinary or sexual symptoms. The treatment was given 3 times per week for 12 weeks. The treatment had a significant positive effect not only on urinary and sexual function after 12 weeks of treatment, but also in measures of vaginal health. The findings raise the possibility that sex hormones may play a role in the development of IC/BPS, though additional studies need to be conducted to confirm and clarify.