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Initial and steady-state pharmacokinetics of a vaginally administered formulation of progesterone

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      Abstract

      OBJECTIVE: The pharmacokinetics of a 100 mg vaginal progesterone suppository was evaluated on days 1 and 7 and a 200 mg suppository on day 14. All the volunteers were given oral 17β-estradiol during the study.
      STUDY DESIGN: Ten postmenopausal women volunteered for this study. Progesterone was given as a vaginal suppository. Peripheral venous samples were obtained at appropriate intervals and analyzed for 17β-estradiol and progesterone levels. Area under the curve for progesterone was assessed by the trapezoidal method. Statistical analysis was performed by a one-way analysis of variance.
      RESULTS: Serum 17β-estradiol leels ranged from 22 to 182 pg/ml. Maximal serum progesterone levels ranged from 5.7 to 20.9 ng/ml, with the mean maximal levels 13.97, 16.09, and 12.68 ng/ml (not significantly different) and a mean area under the curve of 168.13, 207.64 and 227.71 ng/ml per hour on days 1, 7, and 14 (not statistically different).
      CONCLUSIONS: These data indicate that vaginal absorption of progesterone is efficient. The lack of difference in the area under the curve for both doses suggests that the vaginal mucosa or the total surface area of the vagina may limit the absorption of progesterone from the vagina.

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