Taking Topical Estrogen for Menopause Symptoms? Protect Your Children and Pets!
Transdermal estrogen is often prescribed for the treatment of menopause symptoms. Because it is directly absorbed through the skin instead of going through the liver, it is prescribed in a lower dosage, does not process through the liver, and is considered safer for long-term use. Transdermal products include gels, emulsion, compounded creams, or spray applied to the arms, legs, or forearm between the elbow and wrist. All medications applied through the skin have the potential to transfer to children and pets unintentionally. The FDA has issued a warning about Evamist, a spray, for this reason, but any medical skin product has the same potential of transferring to others.
Here are signs of accidental hormone transfer:
In girls, look for nipple swelling and breast development.
In boys, look for breast enlargement.
In pets, look for breast or nipple enlargement in males or females, or vulvar enlargement in females.
How do you prevent the unintentional transfer of transdermal estrogen?
- Read the prescription insert directions for proper use
- Wash your hands immediately after application and before touching anything or anyone
- Prevent children from making contact within the area of a spray application
- If a child comes in direct contact, wash the area immediately with soap and water
- Contact the child’s healthcare provider immediately if you notice any signs or symptoms
- Do not allow pets to lick or touch the area of application and call the vet if signs or symptoms are noticed
- Dispose of estrogen products carefully so they are out of children or pets’ reach
Be aware and keep the kids and pets safe!