As women journey through menopause, a multitude of transformations silently unfold, making their presence felt in the most intimate aspects of life. This transition can bring about discomfort, irritation, dryness, and even urinary incontinence, often leaving women longing for solutions.
Statistics reveal that up to 50% of post-menopausal women in the United States experience sexual dysfunction, a challenge that can significantly impact their quality of life. Those who have undergone hysterectomies face even higher rates of sexual dysfunction, primarily due to the loss of crucial hormonal function. And as women age, these issues tend to intensify.
In the quest for effective treatment options, many women encounter obstacles in the form of side effects associated with systemic drugs. For instance, flibanserin, known by its brand name Addyi and recently approved by the FDA for treating hypoactive sexual desire disorder, carries a black box warning—the most severe cautionary statement by the FDA—due to the risk of fainting or dangerous drops in blood pressure when combined with alcohol or certain medications.
The number one solution has been low dose, local vaginal estrogen. Vaginal estrogen is well known for it’s ability to rejuvenate, rehydrate and restore vaginal and vulvar tissues. Vagina bioidentical estrogen can help prevent urinary tract infections, reverse urinary incontinence, and restore comfort and elasticity to the vaginal tissues. As a result, vaginal estrogen can make intimacy less painful and more comfortable.
But when it comes to sexual desire and satisfaction, there is another, promising solution that has been making its mark: DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone). This natural hormone has been investigated as a potential treatment for post-menopausal women seeking to reclaim their sexual function, as well as address common issues like vaginal dryness, irritation, and urinary incontinence.
How Vaginal DHEA Works
Understanding the potential of DHEA in treating female sexual dysfunction begins with preclinical research. Numerous studies have suggested that DHEA may enhance the sensitivity of nerves within the vaginal wall, thereby increasing responsiveness during sexual intercourse. This heightened sensitivity, attributed to DHEA’s androgenic effects, aims to enhance sexual satisfaction among women. Importantly, just like low dose vaginal estrogen, vaginal DHEA application does not lead to significant systemic changes in hormone levels. This localized action minimizes many of the adverse side effects associated with other treatment options for post-menopausal sexual dysfunction.
Clinical Research on DHEA
Two significant clinical studies have explored the efficacy of vaginal DHEA in addressing female sexual dysfunction, using comprehensive questionnaires such as the Female Sexual Function Index (FSFI), Menopause-Specific Quality of Life (MENQOL) questionnaire, and Abbreviated Sex Function (ASF) questionnaire. These questionnaires are standardized to assess various aspects of female sexual performance, including lubrication, arousal, desire, and orgasm, allowing for an objective assessment of treatment effectiveness.
A 2009 study published in Menopause, a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled phase III clinical trial involving 216 participants was conducted. These postmenopausal women, aged 40 to 75, experienced symptoms like vaginal dryness, irritation, and dyspareunia.
After 12 weeks, the group using vaginal DHEA nightly reported a 49% improvement in sexual desire (per the MENQOL questionnaire) and a 23% improvement (according to the ASF questionnaire).
Additionally, the DHEA group experienced substantial improvements, including a 68% increase in sexual arousal, a 39% enhancement in sexual lubrication, a 75% improvement in the ability to achieve orgasm, and a 57% reduction in vaginal dryness based on the ASF questionnaire, compared to the placebo group.
In another phase III study published in the Journal of Hormone Molecular Biology and Clinical Investigations, Bouchard conducted a year-long investigation involving 154 post-menopausal women with vaginal atrophy. These women received vaginal DHEA daily.
At the study’s conclusion, the participants reported significant improvements in various aspects of sexual function, including a 28% increase in desire, a 49% rise in arousal, a remarkable 115% improvement in lubrication, a 51% enhancement in the ability to orgasm, a 41% increase in satisfaction, and a notable 68% reduction in pain.
Importantly, both studies indicated that the application of vaginal DHEA brought tangible benefits to the sexual function of post-menopausal women without leading to significant systemic changes in androgen and estrogen levels. This suggests that vaginal DHEA may offer a safe and effective solution for enhancing women’s sexual function and addressing related issues, such as vaginal dryness, irritation, and urinary incontinence. Vaginal DHEA can be used alternately or alongside vaginal estrogen for the widest symptom relief.
DHEA Vaginal Serum Reduces Female Sexual Dysfunction: Both clinical studies employed objective questionnaires to assess the quality of women’s sex lives before and after DHEA treatment. Over time, DHEA vaginal serum effectively reduced sexual dysfunction, significantly improving the quality of life for many women.
DHEA Enhances Vaginal Health: Preclinical research demonstrates that DHEA vaginal serum acts on vaginal wall nerves, increasing sensitivity during sexual intercourse. This action contributes to improved vaginal health and offers a clear mechanism for the cream’s effectiveness.
DHEA Boosts Libido in a Brain-Friendly Manner: By stimulating nerve fibers,vaginal DHEA elevates libido without directly affecting the brain. Clinical questionnaires confirm heightened sexual arousal, lubrication, and desire among research participants.
No Systemic Increase in Hormone Levels with Vaginal Estrogen or DHEA: As vaginal DHEA acts locally, systemic effects are minimized. Blood tests in the clinical studies closely monitored hormone levels, confirming that DHEA resulted in fewer side effects compared to other treatments. This higher tolerability enhances patient compliance.
Clinically Tested: While ongoing research continues to explore DHEA’s potential, these studies demonstrate vaginal DHEA serum promise as a safe and effective treatment option for sexual dysfunction and related concerns in post-menopausal women.
Vaginal DHEA now joins vaginal estrogen to offer a glimmer of hope, potentially transforming the landscape of sexual dysfunction treatment for women during the menopausal years. As science delves deeper into this field, the results of these studies are indeed promising, hinting at a paradigm shift in women’s sexual health. It wasn’t long ago that women weren’t even included in medical studies, now we are getting funding for studies to improve sexual satisfaction after menopause – that is definitely a win!
It’s your turn to experience the benefits of vaginal DHEA and vaginal estrogen – a safe, effective way to reverse and/or prevent unwelcome vaginal changes. GLOW Below is the first female physician formulated, 100% plant based, all natural vaginal rejuvenation serum with your choice of DHEA or Estrogen available without a prescription. Get your bottle (a 3 month supply) by clicking here.
Bouchard C, Labrie F, Derogatis L, Girard G, Ayotte N, Gallagher J, Cusan L, Archer DF, Portman D, Lavoie L, Beauregard A, Cote I, Martel C, Vaillancourt M, Balser J, Moyneur E; VVA Prasterone Group. Effect of intravaginal dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) on the female sexual function in postmenopausal women: ERC-230 open-label study. Horm Mol Biol Clin Investig. 2016 Mar;25(3):181-90.
Labrie F, Archer D, Bouchard C, Fortier M, Cusan L, Gomez JL, Girard G, Baron M, Ayotte N, Moreau M, Dube R, Cote I, Labrie C, Lavoie L, Berger L, Gilbert L, Martel C, Balser J. Effect of intravaginal dehydroepiandrosterone (Prasterone) on libido and sexual dysfunction in postmenopausal women. Menopause. 2009 Sep-Oct;16(5):923-31.