new to the idea of menopause

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?"

new to the idea of menopause

Postby miglem » Wed Dec 29, 2004 3:27 pm

hi. first reluctant visit. have been battling what I though was manic depression for 2 years. now i think it may be menopause or peri. turned 37 yesterday, am i too young? I have experienced mood swings, irritability, breast tenderness, mild irregular periods, night sweats, post period pms symptoms, (ie. cramping), muscle strains, i need to nap almost everyday, let's not ignore the cow I have become- heavier than ever.. i have been prescribed a bevvy of antidepressants and anti anxiety....welbutrin, effexor, depakote, and more, nothing works long term. anyone similar? am lost. I don't want to stop taking the medication in case it's on the mark and I am not menopausal, but I certainly don't want to take them if they are the wrong situation.
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Postby scottie » Thu Dec 30, 2004 3:22 pm

My goodness, miglem, my heart goes out to you. J/c, have you talked to your ob/gyn about your symptoms? Maybe he/she can check your hormone levels.

scottie
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Postby drjudy » Sat Jan 01, 2005 11:28 am

Hi Miglem,

Your symptoms are consistent with the onset of early perimenopause, with the wild hormonal fluctuations that accompany that not-so-easy phase. These changes can precipitate all sorts of mood disturbances. Medications that address anxiety, depression, and mood stabilizers are probably only part of the answer for you.

Finding hormonal support for the way you are feeling is difficult--checking hormone levels doesn't necessarily help as they change so rapidly within a day, much less a week or through the month. I hope you can find someone knowledgable about this phase to try various strategies such as cycled progesterone, a small amount of estrogen used during and right after your period, maybe birth control pills. Meanwhile, if you continue on a mood stabilizer such as Depakote, that may be contributing to your weight problems.

There is a book called "Screaming to be Heard: Hormonal Connections Women Suspect, and Doctors Still Ignore" by Elizabeth Lee Vliet that may help you understand better what underlies your hormonal changes.
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/ ... pauzcartoo
Best wishes to you for a better new year,
Judy
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Postby Zero » Sat Jan 01, 2005 6:17 pm

Judy, I added the link to Vliet's book for you and here's her more recent one (2003) It's My Ovaries, Stupid! by Elizabeth Lee Vliet with part of a review:

From Publishers Weekly
Despite the flippant title, this book offers a serious and comprehensive look at hormone dysfunction in women of all ages. Vliet, founder and medical director of HER Place Women's Center, believes that many women suffer needlessly because they are not being treated properly. According to the author, a variety of illnesses-depression, panic attacks, heart disease, diabetes, fertility problems-are related to hormonal dysfunction. Drawing on medical research as well as work in her own practice, Vliet (Screaming to Be Heard) provides a complete guide to ovaries, explaining how they work and what happens when they don't work properly, along with surgical and other treatment. Included are questionnaires so readers can self-diagnose and prepare themselves before visiting a doctor. Also particularly helpful are sidebar definitions and schematic diagrams showing the connection between hormone and illness, such as "How Stress Sabotages Your Health" and "Chemical Disruption of Thyroid Pathways." This is a detailed and sophisticated book, complete with a glossary of medical terms. Readers wanting spoon-fed simplified explanations of their "aches and pains" will find this book daunting, but women who want to become more knowledgeable and assertive patients will find it indispensable.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Zero
 

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