The main difference between estradiol and ethinyl estradiol is that estradiol is the estrogen steroid hormone and the major female sex hormone whereas ethinyl estradiol is a synthetic analog of estradiol widely used in birth control pills.
Estradiol and ethinyl estradiol are two forms of female sex hormones in humans. They have various functions in the human body.
Key Areas Covered
1. What is Estradiol
– Definition, Characteristics, Function
2. What is Ethinyl Estradiol
– Definition, Characteristics, Function
3. Similarities Between Estradiol and Ethinyl Estradiol
– Outline of Common Features
4. Difference Between Estradiol and Ethinyl Estradiol
– Comparison of Key Differences
Estradiol, Ethinyl Estradiol
What is Estradiol
Estradiol is a steroid estrogen hormone that is the major female sex hormone. Estradiol is responsible for the development of secondary sexual characteristics in females. Some secondary sexual characteristics in females include the development of breasts, the widening of hips, and a female-associated pattern of fat distribution. Estradiol is also responsible for the development and maintenance of the female reproductive tissue including mammary glands, uterus, and vagina. In addition, estradiol has benefits in other tissues such as bone, fat, skin, liver, and the brain.
Furthermore, estradiol maintains oocytes inside the female ovary. Ovarian follicles produce estradiol. Cholesterol is the precursor molecule to estradiol and our body produces estradiol through a series of chemical reactions. The production of estradiol leads to a surge in luteinizing hormone and, in turn, induces ovulation. Moreover, estradiol levels are higher in females in comparison to males.
What is Ethinyl Estradiol
Ethinyl estradiol (EE) is a medication that occurs in birth control pills in combination with progestins. It is important in treating menopausal symptoms, gynecological disorders, and certain hormone-sensitive cancers. Tenderness and enlargement in the breast, fluid retention, headache, and nausea are the side effects of ethinyl estradiol. Moreover, ethinyl estradiol serves as an agonist that binds to the estrogen receptors. Therefore, ethinyl estradiol serves as a biological target for the estrogens such as estradiol. However, it is a synthetic derivative of estradiol.
However, the bioavailability of ethinyl estradiol is higher than the natural form of estradiol. In birth control, ethinyl estradiol prevent pregnancy after sex. Moreover, ethinyl estradiol is important in menopausal hormone therapy. It also relieves common vasomotor symptoms like flashes, night sweats, and flushing.
Similarities Between Estradiol and Ethinyl Estradiol
- Estradiol and ethinyl estradiol are two forms of estrogen, the female sex hormone in humans.
- Moreover, they have various functions in the human body.
Difference Between Estradiol and Ethinyl Estradiol
Estradiol refers to an estrogen steroid hormone and the major female sex hormone while ethinyl estradiol is an estrogen medication that is used mainly in birth control pills in combination with progestins.
Estradiol is the natural form of the female sex hormone while ethinyl estradiol is a synthetic form of estradiol.
Usually, estradiol is used in the regulation of the estrous and menstrual female reproductive cycles while ethinyl estradiol is used in birth control pills in combination with progestins.
In brief, estradiol is the natural form of the female sex hormone in humans. It is also an estrogen steroid hormone. In addition, the main function of estradiol is to develop female secondary sexual characteristics and the regulation of the female menstrual reproductive cycle. Ethinyl estradiol, on the other hand, is the synthetic form of estradiol mainly used in birth control pills. Therefore, the main function of estradiol and ethinyl estradiol is their importance.
- Mandal, Dr. Ananya. “What Does Estradiol Do?” News, 27 Feb. 2019.
- “Ethinylestradiol.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 10 Sept. 2022.