Still fighting and searching.....

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?"

Still fighting and searching.....

Postby Rita » Fri Feb 03, 2006 8:52 am

I'm still fighting anxiety and fatigue and searching for answers.
I switched doctors, to one who specializes in female hormone balancing, in hopes of feeling better. At my visit yesterday I learned that from my blood tests that there is no explanation for why I feel so "yucky". My estradiol level was at 69, she said it should be 50-260 (luteal phase). That is WITH me taking .625 mg. of Premarin.

Here is my first question: Would you think that if I WASN'T on the Premarin my estrogen level would be below normal?

I clearly feel worse in every way during one or two weeks of the month still making me believe this is hormone related in some way. (Get the "crashing fatigue" and high anxiety!)(I have no uterus)

So is it possible that durning my "bad" week(s) that my estrogen level is dipping below normal? Is that likely or unlikely that that could happen?

My progesterone level was at 0.5 so she prescribed some supplement for that. Said it may help me sleep better and possibly help a bit with the anxiety.

I will see her again in two months and get a blood test prior to that.

Thanks to anyone who has any answers for me or has had simular experiences.
All my other things tested for with my blood came back normal so I am thankful for that, eventhough I was kind of hoping something would be wrong so there would be an explanation for this "madness".

Thanks again,
Rita
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Postby minniepauz » Fri Feb 03, 2006 12:42 pm

Hang in there Rita!! Maybe Dr. Judy will have some comforting words for you. The best thing we can offer at the moment is the knowledge that you're not alone, you're not crazy and most likely, the worst of this will pass sooner or later!

It does sound as if your doctor is trying to get you balanced, but there's a lot of trial and error that goes with it, as you well know. The time involved will be worth it once you find YOUR balance!

I'm curious and I think I've asked Judy this once before...when doctors do blood work ups, does it also include our mineral and vitamin levels? I've read so much about how we might be low in magnesium, for example, and how would we know what we need to supplement if we aren't tested for it?
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Postby Rita » Fri Feb 03, 2006 1:23 pm

Thanks Dee for your response. I know I have to keep the "fight" going. I asked my doctor if the blood would check for everything and she said yes. I know she said I wasn't anemic (sp?). Since this whole mess has started with me almost a year and a half ago I have been faithfully taking lots of vitamins and minerals. I had researched to be careful that I wasn't taking too much and even that throught had crossed my mind. Just because I wasn't taking too much with a supplement was it ending up too much with what I was eating. I really don't think so though. Yes it really does help so much for me to just come here and "read away". Because of this site I really do believe that it is perimenopausal. I just have soooo....many of the symptoms, yet my blood doesn't show it! And because of this site I have been able to "keep my sanity". Every time I think I am "losing it" I can come here and be reassured. Like with the memory problem, I just wish I could laugh about it the way you guys do, although I am getting better and more relaxed about it now that I don't really believe I am losing my mind. I must admit I have reread the "crashing fatigue" several times also and could have even submited any of those myself, I'm just that! Sorry to write the book here, again thanks for everything and especially for these boards!!!
Oh I guess what I wonder is if we were defficient in anything how long would it take for the vitamins to work. This past month has been my best month in two years. My husband said yesterday,"Maybe all the junk you take is finally working", meaning all my vit., min. and herbs. Who knows.
Rita
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Postby minniepauz » Fri Feb 03, 2006 1:28 pm

Rita, where are you in Michigan? And is your doctor a menopause specialist?
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Postby Rita » Fri Feb 03, 2006 3:14 pm

Hi Dee,
I'm about 30 miles west of Ann Arbor. The doctor I am seeing advertises to specialize in womens care. Her name is Dr. Sara Warber. You can read about her at http://www.med.umich.edu/umim/index.htm They just changed their web site a bit, there is a section to read about her, but I think the part about womens care is under the heading Holistic Women's Health. She practices other stuff too.
Where do you live? Maybe we are neighbors and don't know it!!
Rita
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Postby minniepauz » Fri Feb 03, 2006 3:23 pm

Well, I wish we were neighbors, but I live in Oxford, about an hour north of Detroit. I was going to recommend a couple of specialists in the Detroit area, but it sounds like your doc has some expertise. I do hope things smooth out for you soon!
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Postby drjudy » Fri Feb 10, 2006 12:30 pm

Hi Rita,

There seems to be as much art as science to balancing these aging bodies, doesn't there? Sounds like you are doing a great job of being your own best advocate, and maybe Dr. Warber is on the right track to getting you on track.

A couple of thoughts: Premarin is an oral hormone replacement therapy that may be absorbed erratically from the GI tract or metabolized unevenly by the liver. In addition, it is largely metabolized to estrone vs. estradiol, causing a balance in the body tipped towards estrone whereas our premenopausal balance was evenly distributed between estrone and estradiol. Research suggests that estradiol is the important form of estrogen with respect to affecting brain function.

Furthermore, as oral hormones pass through the liver, the liver also gears up to make more sex-hormone binding globulin. This protein binds up estradiol as it goes through the circulation, making less free estradiol available to cells. Same thing for testosterone. Less free testosterone and estradiol may have effects on energy levels, libido, mood, and thinking functions. Dr. Warber may have checked free estradiol and testosterone levels already; you might ask at your next visit.

Dee, we don't routinely check for vitamin or all mineral levels. That would be a very expensive screening process. I think, however, you may have a good point with respect to magnesium--many may be deficient and not know it. I'd be more inclined to recommend a balanced supplement of calcium and magnesium than to check levels.

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Postby Rita » Sat Feb 11, 2006 9:54 am

Thanks for that nice reply Dr. Judy.
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