I am 58 and have been having menopausal symptoms for 7 or 8 years. I had a hysterectomy at age 38, retaining both ovaries. I have 5 large cysts in my left breast and 2 small ones in the right which my GP is aware of. Is it safe for me to use Estradiol patches? My worst symptom is hot flushes/sweats, in particular at night, so I am getting very poor sleep. How soon can I expect any improvement after using the patches?