Dr. Goldstein prescribed Estradiol gel to me in April. As I've said before, the gel at first was very irritating. Over time I got used to it more, but it still irritated me sometimes. At this point my gel was 0.03% estradiol and 0.1% testosterone in a cellulose base. I started reading on other blogs and on my vaginismus yahoo group that some people have Estradiol gel with an Emu oil base. I called Dr. G. to find out more about this. His office called their pharmacy and the pharmacist explained that many people find the emu oil to be more soothing, but not necessarily for the right reasons. It turns out that the emu oil absorbs more of the estrogen and testosterone, making less of it actually absorb into your skin, making it less irritating because it's the hormones that are irritating in the first place. So I didn't want to go with emu oil because I want as many hormones as possible getting into my body. They did have one other suggestion - to use the same ratio of estrogen and testosterone in a different base - I wish I could tell you exactly what the base is, but on the bottle all it says is "ACID MA# 100". I have no idea what that means exactly, but the word "acid" sure is scary. However, I do like this version better. It is less irritating and thicker. I still get irritated sometimes, but it's less than with the cellulose-based Estradiol.
So there's the rundown on Estradiol options. Please let me know if you have any questions. When I go see Dr. G. on October 21, I'll find out exactly what that "acid" base is.