Ask the Nurse

What is the difference between using the estradiol 0.5 patch versus taking the estradiol 0.5 tablet?

Estradiol in both the oral and patch formulations are well studied for their use in menopause and both truly are good options. Oral estrogen tends to be better for patients with mood symptoms of menopause, and is good for those patients who report significant hair loss associated with hot flashes at midlife.

However, the patch is better for patients with:

  • Diabetes
  • High cholesterol
  • Prior history of a blood clot and/or taking a blood thinner
  • Who often forget to take pills and prefer the convenience of a patch.

Very rarely, some patients have an allergic skin reaction to the patch and are unable to tolerate it. Estrogen also comes in sprays and gels that can be applied to the skin for those that have a skin reaction to the patch. There are many different nuances that can be discussed with your provider when deciding between the patch and the oral route, however the bottom line is that both are well tolerated and helpful for symptomatic menopausal patients.

All my best,
Speaking of Women’s Health Nurse

March 4, 2016 at 12:54pm