Estrogen Microbiome Study

Estrogen Microbiome

The Women's Health Research Unit at OHSU is excited to announce the start of a new study that seeks to understand how the microbial community or "microbiome" of the vagina and bladder may play a role in symptoms many women experience in menopause, including vaginal dryness, painful sex, uncomfortable urination and recurrent urinary tract infections.


The purpose of this study is to learn more about how estrogen affects the local microbial community or "microbiome" that exists in the vagina and bladder in women who have gone through menopause. There is some thought that some of the bothersome urinary and vaginal symptoms that women experience in menopause may be related to an underlying change in the microbiome of the bladder and vagina as estrogen levels drop. Estrogen treatment can improve these symptoms in many women. We want to see how estrogen treatment alters the microbiome of the bladder and vagina, as this may help us to develop more targeted therapies for women in the future.


Inclusion Criteria:
  • Postmenopausal women ages 40-89

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Use of hormone therapy in the last 3 months
  • Current tamoxifen use
  • Currently using vaginal pessary
  • History of breast cancer or BRCA mutation
  • History of uterine, ovarian or cervical cancer
  • History of deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolism
  • History of stroke or myocardial infarction
  • Known thrombophilic disorder (Protein S deficiency, Protein C deficiency, antithrombin deficiency)
  • Known liver disease
  • Use of systemic or vaginal antibiotics in the last 2 months
  • Urinary tract or vaginal infection in the last 2 months


Participants will be compensated up to $75 for time and travel.

Who do I contact for additional information?

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