Think this may be it (would appreciate feedback)

For those of you who are just beginning this wonderful process, here we can narrow down the symptoms and ask questions like "am I starting perimenopause?"

Think this may be it (would appreciate feedback)

Postby momamea » Thu Dec 29, 2005 11:49 am

I have made an appointment with my GYN for mid January (it has taken 2 1/2 months to get in ... so I want to make sure I make best use of this appointment). So I would very much appreciate any feedback you might have!

Where I am at right now ...
I am having cycles that last anywhere from 24 to 32 days, they vary in intensity. I have started to wake extremely early. Sometimes this is accompanied by feeling like I am overheating. Throwing blankets off only to have to grab for them later. Other times I just seem to be unable to sleep anymore even though I am extremely tired! The week before and during my period seem to be the worst for panicy feelings and extreme vulnerability. I get migraines for a couple of days probably 3 times during my cycle.

Background ...
I am 35 years old. Up until my last baby was born (2 years 8 months ago) my cycles were almost perfect at 28 days per month. I have endometriosis. I am not taking anything for this other than pain killers as needed. I had one ovary and tube removed when I was 20. (Does anyone know how this might impact menopause for me). I am not on any medication - no birth control, etc.

I really would prefer not to do birth control or other synthetic hormones. Yet these symptoms are beginning to really disrupt my life. (Oh it is hard ot admit that!) So what should I be looking for -- what should I ask for at my appointment -- what should I expect ... any insight at all would be greatly appreciated!
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Postby minniepauz » Thu Dec 29, 2005 12:56 pm

momamea....Dr. Judy may not get a chance to respond right away, but I wanted to let you know that you will get a response as soon as possible.

It definitely sounds like you have some kind of hormonal imbalance going on, but it's very hard to say exactly when someone's former problems are the beginning of peri-menopause. It's not totally unheard of for women your age, but there are so many other conditions that could be causing your symptoms that the best thing is to make sure your doctor is aware of everything you've mentioned here. You might want to write it down (or just print your post) to take to your appointment. Then you and your doctor can make a decision based on your needs and wants...you might decide to take the birth control for awhile if that helps with your symptoms.

The main thing is for you to be as informed as possible and to trust your intuition and what you want to do with your body. It's very reassuring to know that you have a say in your health.

Hang in there and let us know how you're doing!
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Postby colopam » Thu Dec 29, 2005 1:01 pm

momamea
Welcome!
THE first thing I've done (and am in the process of doing again) is go to the http://www.minniepauz.com/printsymptoms.html and print out those 35 symptoms, check off the ones that you'r experiencing along with duration and frequency and take them with you to the doctor. I always hate when I've gone in the past and remembered something I wanted addressed as I'm heading out the parking lot! I think it's not only a learning process for us but for our doctors as well ( my Dr. here is pretty good but my one in TN hated that I did alot of my own research and tried to discount alot of it). I keep going back to the list and every so often something else pops out at me, this week it was the dizziness (had a couple of episodes) so instead of freaking out about it I was able to recognize it for what it was and now it goes on my list for my doctor. My DMIL was always intimidated by doctors so I would go with her so nothing was missed, I've also had friends that would do this for one another, if this is the case for you, take along a trusted friend. Make sure you get the time to go over your list and get your questions answered. Take care!
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Postby drjudy » Sat Dec 31, 2005 1:35 pm

Hi momamea,

Despite your age, your symptoms are absolutely consistent with perimenopause. The irregularity of cycle length, and the aggravating symptoms before and during your period suggest that you are no longer regularly experiencing ovulation with its predictable rise and fall of hormones.

At your age, most women are still experiencing their full complement of hormones. Not only do perimenopausal symptoms make it extremely difficult to deal with the demands of life and small children, but the lack of hormones may take a toll on your health. We are all a little nervous these days about using hormones after the bad press concerning these issues (based on studies of women fully three to four decades older than you some of whom were not in very good health), but young women heading for premature menopause either naturally or through surgery are absolutely a group who can benefit health-wise from hormone supplementation.

I hope your doctor will help you feel comfortable with a strategy that will return you to feeling great with the energy you should have.

Best wishes,
Judy

p.s. my experience personally and with others who only have one ovary is that the age of menopause is not changed but the aggravation of perimenopause is exaggerated. Great, huh?
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Follow up with Dr. Judy regarding premature peri

Postby momamea » Tue Jan 03, 2006 9:25 am

Dr. Judy,

I literally prayed thanking God for you this weekend. What an incredible blessing you are to lend your insight for so many of us who have such limited exposure to this.

I wonder if you mind sharing with me what the positives / negatives would be relating to hormonal therapy in my case. Specifically, I guess I'm wondering if you could explain your comment ... "women heading for premature menopause either naturally or through surgery are absolutely a group who can benefit health-wise from hormone supplementation." What types of health benefits are there to be had from hormone supplementation? What types of risks? Are there any specifics relative to do's and don'ts ... like these tests should be performed, these types of meds are to be avoided etc.?

Are there any typicals when it comes to the duration of this type of treatment? In other words if I go on it will I be on it for the rest of my life? Are there mile markers along the way to look for, etc?

Again, may God richly bless you for all you have contributed to so many, and I specifically thank you for your consideration in my case!
----
Tina
Birth Year: 1970, suspected prolonged peri-menopause due to removal of one ovary at age 20
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Postby drjudy » Thu Jan 05, 2006 8:42 pm

Dear Tina,

I answered some of your questions on the other forum, but thought I'd add another comment or two after reviewing the details of your situation. I'm not sure I'd order all the tests that I mentioned on my other post as I'd forgotten that you were still having periods. Many of those tests would likely be normal.

Given your age and busy life, and your successful use of birth control pills in the past, I'd reconsider with your doctor the possibility of taking them once again. There is nothing about taking them now that commits you to an unlimited future of taking them--they would just control your symptoms and cycles while you get on with your life. They would take care of heat, sleeplessness, panic, and probably frequency of migraines.

There's no telling what will happen in the future. If you truly are winding down in your ovarian function, then ongoing use of hormones would not only benefit your day to day life, it would protect your bones, heart, and brain from an early lack of hormones. Women who enter menopause prematurely are known to be more vulnerable to depression, migraines, heart attacks, and osteoporosis.

I hope your gyn. will help you with your decisions at your appt. this month.

Judy
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Postby momamea » Sun Jan 08, 2006 6:14 pm

Once again, thank you, Dr. Judy!

I would really like to avoid birth control pills - not that I am trying to get pregnant, but I certainly wouldn't refuse the idea. Plus it feels to me like I would be using an overabundance of hormones - that would not be specific to what my body is lacking? Is there a more precise way to supplement my body?

Are there reasons birth controll pills would be better?
----
Tina
Birth Year: 1970, suspected prolonged peri-menopause due to removal of one ovary at age 20
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Postby drjudy » Tue Jan 10, 2006 11:56 am

Birth control pills probably would suppress your own fluctuating hormones, providing you with even levels. Occasionally, however, you are right and they just add to the overabundance.

Another good option is using cycle progesterone from mid-cycle until your period starts again.

Hard to know what's right for you. I hope you can work with your doctor to explore different options.

Best,
Judy
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Update

Postby momamea » Thu Jan 19, 2006 10:09 am

Well, this morning was to have been my much awaited appointment with my GYN (I scheduled the appointment nearly 3 months ago) and ... I got a call that my doctor is in surgery so they were going to have to reschedule.

Thankfully I only have to wait one more week as my appt will now be next Thursday. I feel for the women in surgery, for my doctor and everyone else impacted. And I figure, this must have happened for a reason, so I might as well just make use of this "extra" time.

So any thoughts -- on what would be good for me to do during this time. Any reading you would recommend. Any notes I should jot down relative to symptoms or tests or anything else that would be helpful to my doctor, so she can have an easier time getting to the bottom of this.

Otherwise there is always some scrapbooking to do ;-)

Wishing everyone all the best!
----
Tina
Birth Year: 1970, suspected prolonged peri-menopause due to removal of one ovary at age 20
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Postby minniepauz » Thu Jan 19, 2006 3:57 pm

Wouldn't you just know it, momamea!! :) But I like your attitude in just taking it calmly and not stressing out about the extra week. I'm sure Judy will have a suggestion or two about books, but you might also want to check out my book list at http://www.minniepauz.com/books.html There are some really really good ones there and I've tried to give a review of the ones I've personally read, so depending if you just want some fiction or more factual, you'll get an idea of what each one is about.
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Postby colopam » Fri Jan 20, 2006 8:39 pm

Oh the old "Hurry up and wait!!!" Keep us updated and good luck!!
Hugs Pam
It's never too late for a happy childhood!!
The more you live, the less you die!!
Well behaved women rarely make history.
DB: 1958
peri/hypothyroid/fibroids(myomectomy)
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Update

Postby momamea » Thu Jan 26, 2006 2:55 pm

I had my appointment this morning ... The results ...

My doc wants to take a real common sense first step approach - she wants me to take an over the counter calcium / magnesium combo (2 to 1 ratio). She went on to explain to me a bunch about magnesium and how they use it in IV's to treat some pretty major things. This kind of stuff helps me to not feel like she is just telling me to take a pill and go on with thing, but that she has really heard me and is suggesting something based on knowledge.

So we will go that route. After some time of trying that, if I still feel I need more help, I'll go back.

Does anyone have any insight to share relative to magnesium or calcium/magnesium?
----
Tina
Birth Year: 1970, suspected prolonged peri-menopause due to removal of one ovary at age 20
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Postby minniepauz » Thu Jan 26, 2006 3:45 pm

Tina....good for your doc!! I started compiling info about calcium/magnesium awhile back on this page: http://www.minniepauz.com/calcium.html There's a lot of stuff that people don't know about the power of taking these. One thing I would add is the part about taking LIQUID versions. You can read why under the osteoporosis part where it says Note from Dee.
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Postby ckvk45 » Thu Jan 26, 2006 4:31 pm

Hi Tina ,
Dee just directed me to your post ..... i sure hope you can feel better ...i have one ovary ...i have to agree with Dr Judy, having only one makes perimenopause peri-hell......i am a few years older than you 44 ..but believe i started peri at 38 years myself ...i also have the migrianes as well ...i am going to up my magnesium ..i have been taking cal/mag ...but i may need one more magnesium a day ..only doing one 200 mg now ...i also have endometriosis ...i had a hyster leaving one ovary behind ...sometimes i really wish it was gone , cause it works then it quits for a few months making life hell...the endo pain is acting up for me now ...going to try the climara pro patch ...i dont like using a progestin ,,, but i need to try try try lol

.....Wishing you all the luck in the world :D
Hugs, V
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