Is It Over Yet? The Perimenopause Thread

1323334353638»

Replies

  • justanotherloser007
    justanotherloser007 Posts: 578 Member
    I had an ob/gyn tell me that my menstrual cup probably caused my fibroids... but I am pretty sure I started using a cup because the flow was so incredibly heavy. Was she fibbing? I am about to buy a disc instead of a cup, but her stupid comment is in the back of my mind. Pads are a bit ridiculous with the clots, and I think I still have PTSD from 2 cycles back.
  • claireychn074
    claireychn074 Posts: 1,286 Member
    kshama2001 wrote: »
    kshama2001 wrote: »
    Well I started HRT a month ago (it was either that or I was going to pay privately to get a hysterectomy as I can’t cope with the constant heavy bleeding any more). And I look like a puffer fish. I’ve always become bloated near my period and I am good at holding water (must have been a cactus in a previous life) but wow, I am like a water balloon 😳

    Hoping this is a side effect of a new treatment and that it will calm down in time. Peri I hate you!!

    Because of the type of surgery needed for a hysterectomy for my 11 pound fibroids, my surgery plus three night hospital stay cost almost $100,000, but Uncle Sam picked up the tab. :smiley:

    Wouldn't yours be medically necessary and covered by your insurance? My GYN had been imploring me to have this done for years.

    I had no puffiness with the progesterone norethindrone acetate.

    Hey, if you're taking Cymbalta/duloxetine or similar for depression - don't. I needed a blood transfusion after an unbelievably heavy bleeding incident. Turns out Cymbalta, especially when taken with NSAIDS, can increase bleeding. WHICH MY PRESCRIBER SHOULD HAVE KNOWN >.<
    I’m in the UK so in theory healthcare is free at the point of use. But our health system is massively struggling. It’s awesome for serious or life threatening care, but for stuff like this you wait ages and ages (had blood tests 25th May, was told to organise appointment with GP to discuss them, first appointment was 6th august). So I paid privately to get on top of any potential issues (previous cancer causes weird stuff!). Have paid to see a private HRT specialist who was incredibly thorough and prescribed - but only if the NHS agreed.

    I don’t want surgery, I really don’t, but I’ve been struggling to get anyone to listen to me. The HRT specialist was the first person to actually agree that the bleeding isn’t normal and should be treated - I can’t blame GPS as they aren’t trained in menopause in the UK. But the bleeding led to a blood disorder which enabled me to get attention.

    I am still a pufferfish but if this works then I’m all for it! 😀

    @claireychn074 Thanks to MFP, I am trained to measure things. I have a menstrual cup, and noted how many times I changed it, and guessed at the volume when I was gushing clots. This way, I was able to tell my providers more than "I'm bleeding a lot" but, "I lost 500 ml of blood" or "I lost over 1000 ml of blood." (Went to the ER and got my second transfusion after that one.)

    I went to the website where I bought the cup and they don't sell them there anymore, but hooray! They sell them on Amazon, where there are tons of choices but this is a really good XL one, with a capacity of 40 ml.

    https://www.amazon.com/Gladrags-Xo-Flo-Menstrual-Cup/dp/B06XFKGP1K

    Prior to that I used the OB Ultra tampon. Since you're in the UK, you should be able to get the OB "European Ultra" which is more absorbent than the one sold in the US. But for gushing blood, I preferred a cup.

    For pharmaceutical interventions, I started with progesterone, first Prometrium, then norethindrone acetate.

    Then I added Tranexamic acid, which I'd take once the bleeding kicked in. I took the first progesterone from ovulation until menstruation. The norethindrone acetate was supposed to stop my bleeding all together. It did reduce it to a trickle, and once in a while I'd have these crazy bleeding incidents. I had some amount of bleeding from February - November, when my hysterectomy put an end to that at last >.<

    Last April, I started a 6 months course of Lupron, which was supposed to reduce the fibroids 50% and bridge me to menopause, but it did nothing for me, and made my GYNs concerned that I might have cancer, which is what finally talked me into the hysterectomy. (No cancer :smiley: but they could not establish this until the post-surgery biopsy. )

    I'm a veteran and get my health care through the VA. The Prometrium and Tranexamic acid were not in the formulary, and I had to jump through hoops to get them prescribed. I'm sure me being able to quantify my blood loss was helpful for this.

    I also had to jump through hoops to get a fibroid expert from outside the VA. My plan was for her to get me to menopause without surgery, but when this became medically necessary, I was so glad to have it done at a superb Boston hospital rather than from one of my VA GYNs who'd been underperforming for 10 years.

    Ugh, 2022 was a hard year for so many reasons!
    Really, really helpful info - thank you!

    I do use a cup but I also looking a disc, following a recent study where they measured the amount of actual blood (not saline for the first time) that products can hold.
  • kshama2001
    kshama2001 Posts: 27,736 Member
    I had an ob/gyn tell me that my menstrual cup probably caused my fibroids... but I am pretty sure I started using a cup because the flow was so incredibly heavy. Was she fibbing? I am about to buy a disc instead of a cup, but her stupid comment is in the back of my mind. Pads are a bit ridiculous with the clots, and I think I still have PTSD from 2 cycles back.

    I'm hoping you just misunderstood her, because as there is absolutely no mechanism for cups to cause fibroids, this would be a very ... weird ... thing for her to say.
  • kshama2001
    kshama2001 Posts: 27,736 Member
    kshama2001 wrote: »
    kshama2001 wrote: »
    Well I started HRT a month ago (it was either that or I was going to pay privately to get a hysterectomy as I can’t cope with the constant heavy bleeding any more). And I look like a puffer fish. I’ve always become bloated near my period and I am good at holding water (must have been a cactus in a previous life) but wow, I am like a water balloon 😳

    Hoping this is a side effect of a new treatment and that it will calm down in time. Peri I hate you!!

    Because of the type of surgery needed for a hysterectomy for my 11 pound fibroids, my surgery plus three night hospital stay cost almost $100,000, but Uncle Sam picked up the tab. :smiley:

    Wouldn't yours be medically necessary and covered by your insurance? My GYN had been imploring me to have this done for years.

    I had no puffiness with the progesterone norethindrone acetate.

    Hey, if you're taking Cymbalta/duloxetine or similar for depression - don't. I needed a blood transfusion after an unbelievably heavy bleeding incident. Turns out Cymbalta, especially when taken with NSAIDS, can increase bleeding. WHICH MY PRESCRIBER SHOULD HAVE KNOWN >.<
    I’m in the UK so in theory healthcare is free at the point of use. But our health system is massively struggling. It’s awesome for serious or life threatening care, but for stuff like this you wait ages and ages (had blood tests 25th May, was told to organise appointment with GP to discuss them, first appointment was 6th august). So I paid privately to get on top of any potential issues (previous cancer causes weird stuff!). Have paid to see a private HRT specialist who was incredibly thorough and prescribed - but only if the NHS agreed.

    I don’t want surgery, I really don’t, but I’ve been struggling to get anyone to listen to me. The HRT specialist was the first person to actually agree that the bleeding isn’t normal and should be treated - I can’t blame GPS as they aren’t trained in menopause in the UK. But the bleeding led to a blood disorder which enabled me to get attention.

    I am still a pufferfish but if this works then I’m all for it! 😀

    @claireychn074 Thanks to MFP, I am trained to measure things. I have a menstrual cup, and noted how many times I changed it, and guessed at the volume when I was gushing clots. This way, I was able to tell my providers more than "I'm bleeding a lot" but, "I lost 500 ml of blood" or "I lost over 1000 ml of blood." (Went to the ER and got my second transfusion after that one.)

    I went to the website where I bought the cup and they don't sell them there anymore, but hooray! They sell them on Amazon, where there are tons of choices but this is a really good XL one, with a capacity of 40 ml.

    https://www.amazon.com/Gladrags-Xo-Flo-Menstrual-Cup/dp/B06XFKGP1K

    Prior to that I used the OB Ultra tampon. Since you're in the UK, you should be able to get the OB "European Ultra" which is more absorbent than the one sold in the US. But for gushing blood, I preferred a cup.

    For pharmaceutical interventions, I started with progesterone, first Prometrium, then norethindrone acetate.

    Then I added Tranexamic acid, which I'd take once the bleeding kicked in. I took the first progesterone from ovulation until menstruation. The norethindrone acetate was supposed to stop my bleeding all together. It did reduce it to a trickle, and once in a while I'd have these crazy bleeding incidents. I had some amount of bleeding from February - November, when my hysterectomy put an end to that at last >.<

    Last April, I started a 6 months course of Lupron, which was supposed to reduce the fibroids 50% and bridge me to menopause, but it did nothing for me, and made my GYNs concerned that I might have cancer, which is what finally talked me into the hysterectomy. (No cancer :smiley: but they could not establish this until the post-surgery biopsy. )

    I'm a veteran and get my health care through the VA. The Prometrium and Tranexamic acid were not in the formulary, and I had to jump through hoops to get them prescribed. I'm sure me being able to quantify my blood loss was helpful for this.

    I also had to jump through hoops to get a fibroid expert from outside the VA. My plan was for her to get me to menopause without surgery, but when this became medically necessary, I was so glad to have it done at a superb Boston hospital rather than from one of my VA GYNs who'd been underperforming for 10 years.

    Ugh, 2022 was a hard year for so many reasons!
    Really, really helpful info - thank you!

    I do use a cup but I also looking a disc, following a recent study where they measured the amount of actual blood (not saline for the first time) that products can hold.

    Huh, those differently shaped cups I saw when looking for the XO Flo must have been discs, that's new to me.

    Good luck!

    xxxooo
  • TheMarvelousMsT
    TheMarvelousMsT Posts: 1 Member
    I went 84 days with no period, then 3 weeks later had one for 7 days, then 3 week later started bleeding with huge clots. That started on June 10th non stop, OBGYN found a fibroid 4.4 centimeters, said all other organs and uterus wall looked okay and that she didn't think the fibroid was causing the bleeding. She put me on Slynd and said they would watch the fibroid. I'm 52, I think I have been in peri-menopause for two years now. Gained 25 lbs over the last 2 years. Found an article from a doctor talking about how diets can shrink fibroids. It's worth a try.
  • justanotherloser007
    justanotherloser007 Posts: 578 Member
    edited August 2023
    I once looked into the diets for shrinking fibroids and less bleeding, unfortunately for me I am already eating that way. Or maybe fortunately? Not sure. I couldn't do anything else to improve my chances for a better outcome. BUT I did try the menstrual disc! And I gotta say, where was this in 2017 to now? LOVE IT! It is so nice to not have to wear an overnight pad, and period underwear, and still bleed through throughout the day!! I mean, I literally have a towel/blanket in the car, and couch because my periods have been so crazy! I often joke that there needs to be a period diaper!

    Well, period diaper needs no longer!! I bought this reusable menstrual disc, called flex - https://www.amazon.com/Reusable-Menstrual-Alternative-Medical-Grade-Disposable/dp/B00LWE69NU/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?crid=H3XCZVE70QUH&amp;keywords=flex+reusable+menstrual+disc&amp;qid=1693429805&amp;sprefix=flex+re,aps,153&amp;sr=8-1-spons&amp;sp_csd=d2lkZ2V0TmFtZT1zcF9hdGY&amp;psc=1 , but I am sure all discs are nice since they hold so much more and have zero problems with clots, unlike pads! The cups I have had could never handle the flow. Also, the discs have some sort of "magic" happening when you pee or bear down, it automatically releases the contents (yes, you do not have to take it out every hour on a heavy bleed day!!!). Which as a previous cup user was a bit of a challenge if I ever wanted to leave the house or simply wanted to make darn sure I didn't bleed everywhere. I love the mechanism of the disc. I can take it out every 12 hours to clean it and know it has released the contents when I used the bathroom. Voila! I really really really really like it.

    Also, I wish I had heard the ob/gyn wrong about menstrual cups - but she was specific and graphic about the cup backing up into the womb and "causing fibroids" from the inability to drain during heavy periods. (which again begs the chicken and egg question as I was using the cups BECAUSE I was bleeding heavily and couldn't deal with pads). I don't know where she got the idea from, but I haven't seen this anywhere else, and I had difficulty with her personality anyway and found a different one I trust more than her, which wasn't difficult - since my trust in her was pretty much zero.
  • kshama2001
    kshama2001 Posts: 27,736 Member
    I once looked into the diets for shrinking fibroids and less bleeding, unfortunately for me I am already eating that way. Or maybe fortunately? Not sure. I couldn't do anything else to improve my chances for a better outcome. BUT I did try the menstrual disc! And I gotta say, where was this in 2017 to now? LOVE IT! It is so nice to not have to wear an overnight pad, and period underwear, and still bleed through throughout the day!! I mean, I literally have a towel/blanket in the car, and couch because my periods have been so crazy! I often joke that there needs to be a period diaper!

    Well, period diaper needs no longer!! I bought this reusable menstrual disc, called flex - https://www.amazon.com/Reusable-Menstrual-Alternative-Medical-Grade-Disposable/dp/B00LWE69NU/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?crid=H3XCZVE70QUH&amp;keywords=flex+reusable+menstrual+disc&amp;qid=1693429805&amp;sprefix=flex+re,aps,153&amp;sr=8-1-spons&amp;sp_csd=d2lkZ2V0TmFtZT1zcF9hdGY&amp;psc=1 , but I am sure all discs are nice since they hold so much more and have zero problems with clots, unlike pads! The cups I have had could never handle the flow. Also, the discs have some sort of "magic" happening when you pee or bear down, it automatically releases the contents (yes, you do not have to take it out every hour on a heavy bleed day!!!). Which as a previous cup user was a bit of a challenge if I ever wanted to leave the house or simply wanted to make darn sure I didn't bleed everywhere. I love the mechanism of the disc. I can take it out every 12 hours to clean it and know it has released the contents when I used the bathroom. Voila! I really really really really like it.

    Also, I wish I had heard the ob/gyn wrong about menstrual cups - but she was specific and graphic about the cup backing up into the womb and "causing fibroids" from the inability to drain during heavy periods. (which again begs the chicken and egg question as I was using the cups BECAUSE I was bleeding heavily and couldn't deal with pads). I don't know where she got the idea from, but I haven't seen this anywhere else, and I had difficulty with her personality anyway and found a different one I trust more than her, which wasn't difficult - since my trust in her was pretty much zero.

    Yikes! Glad you switched doctors. Oy. I also developed fibroids long before I relied on a cup. And it had no problem not backing up - just ask my stained Glad Rags and underwear, lol.

    I missed out on the disc but am happy for you ladies!
  • dralicephd
    dralicephd Posts: 401 Member
    Well I started HRT a month ago (it was either that or I was going to pay privately to get a hysterectomy as I can’t cope with the constant heavy bleeding any more). And I look like a puffer fish. I’ve always become bloated near my period and I am good at holding water (must have been a cactus in a previous life) but wow, I am like a water balloon 😳

    Hoping this is a side effect of a new treatment and that it will calm down in time. Peri I hate you!!

    I've been off the forum for a bit, so maybe you've gotten past this by now.... In any case, just wanted to say that the pufferfish thing has happened to me also, but it went away after about 2 months of hormones. Give your body time to adjust.

    I've had some issues over the last few months with changing hormone levels to try and dial in the right dosage for me. Each time, side effects leveled out right at about week 8. I'm on a new, good dosage, and at week 7. Waiting for the current pufferfish mode to go away.....

    Given the choice, however, I'll take pufferfish over crime scene periods and lack of sleep.

    I hope all is well for you!

  • karene1313
    karene1313 Posts: 1 Member
    refactored wrote: »
    Has anyone else noticed fluctuations in weight around what feels like should be TOM but ends up being missed?

    I am eating at my calorie target and exercising as usual. I haven't changed what I am eating substantially.

    Hey there! I've been in "peri-menopause" for 7 years now. What a pain. And yes, especially when I first started, i gained 5 lbs for no reason (and I was actually eating healthy and working out at the time) - it was extremely de-motivating. I will say after the first year of peri things normalized and I could go back to eating normal and not gaining weight, but it was difficult.

    Re: the anger / losing your mind. I also had that in spades. I would find myself getting angry at the drop of a hat for something that was rather inconsequential. I'm not normally a "supplement" girl, but I found Maca Root for menopause and it really worked for me. On days i forgot to take it (because I am not good about pills) I would notice getting more irritable around 12 - 2. To me that was enough "proof" it was working for me.

    Good luck to everyone. I think I'm 6 months away from the official menopause but peri can go on for a very long time...
  • kshama2001
    kshama2001 Posts: 27,736 Member
    I'm feeling a little hormonal, which I thought was odd, because I had a hysterectomy 11 months ago. But I kept my ovaries, which can apparently still keep kicking out testosterone anyway for up to 20 years. I had my hormones tested earlier this year and the endocrinologist said I had the hormone levels of a young woman. I'm going to be 57 :lol: I've still never had a hot flash.

    I wonder if I can still have ovulation-related water retention...

    @claireychn074 how's it going?
  • claireychn074
    claireychn074 Posts: 1,286 Member
    kshama2001 wrote: »
    I'm feeling a little hormonal, which I thought was odd, because I had a hysterectomy 11 months ago. But I kept my ovaries, which can apparently still keep kicking out testosterone anyway for up to 20 years. I had my hormones tested earlier this year and the endocrinologist said I had the hormone levels of a young woman. I'm going to be 57 :lol: I've still never had a hot flash.

    I wonder if I can still have ovulation-related water retention...

    @claireychn074 how's it going?

    Drat it. I wrote a nice detailed response, got interrupted before I could post it and now it’s gone!

    The HRT is helping me HUGELY. Apologies for TMI and to those with a sensitive disposition, but the crime scene constant periods are now under control. I can plan stuff and even go out - absolute life changing. Blood work is getting better (ie I’m not losing so much blood), and my periods are so much shorter, lighter and not nearly as painful 😀 I am slowly losing the water so I don’t resemble a pufferfish as much either. Scans and checks on the fibroids and ovarian tumour still ongoing but I am currently one very happy person! I know HRT isn’t for everyone but crikey it works for me.
  • kshama2001
    kshama2001 Posts: 27,736 Member
    kshama2001 wrote: »
    I'm feeling a little hormonal, which I thought was odd, because I had a hysterectomy 11 months ago. But I kept my ovaries, which can apparently still keep kicking out testosterone anyway for up to 20 years. I had my hormones tested earlier this year and the endocrinologist said I had the hormone levels of a young woman. I'm going to be 57 :lol: I've still never had a hot flash.

    I wonder if I can still have ovulation-related water retention...

    @claireychn074 how's it going?

    Drat it. I wrote a nice detailed response, got interrupted before I could post it and now it’s gone!

    The HRT is helping me HUGELY. Apologies for TMI and to those with a sensitive disposition, but the crime scene constant periods are now under control. I can plan stuff and even go out - absolute life changing. Blood work is getting better (ie I’m not losing so much blood), and my periods are so much shorter, lighter and not nearly as painful 😀 I am slowly losing the water so I don’t resemble a pufferfish as much either. Scans and checks on the fibroids and ovarian tumour still ongoing but I am currently one very happy person! I know HRT isn’t for everyone but crikey it works for me.

    Hooray! So glad to hear this :smiley:
  • claireychn074
    claireychn074 Posts: 1,286 Member
    Just thought I’d give an update for those considering HRT. Firstly, I know it’s not for everyone, and not everyone will want to take it. But it’s been life changing for me. I’m on month 4, and the difference is amazing. Symptoms of peri vary but being able to sleep, not lose as much blood, the huge reduction in hot flushes and just generally feeling so much better. My ability to perform at my sport has radically improved - due to the sleep and better periods I suspect - and I’m just not exhausted any more. I thought my low mood was due to feeling wretched and I feel much happier, calmer and just generally “with it”.

    I wanted to sail smoothly through peri and out the other side without hormones but I just couldn’t. For me, this is a workable solution and I feel SO much better.
  • kshama2001
    kshama2001 Posts: 27,736 Member
    Hooray - so glad HRT helped you @claireychn074!

    I too had a plan for getting through to menopause which did not work out, which was with my uterus, but I'm happy to be on the other side.
  • dralicephd
    dralicephd Posts: 401 Member
    So glad to hear you are feeling better, @claireychn074!!!

    HRT has been great for me, too. Mostly. I've had some issues with spotting and irregular periods (I used to be as regular as a calendar!), so the doc has adjusted things a couple of times. This has been a little rough, as each dosage change causes some side effects. Consequently, I've found myself falling back into old emotional snacking habits, and have gained a bit of the weight I lost.
    😞 I'm currently in "limit the damage" phase with respect to weight loss, while I wait for the hormones to level out.

    Despite this bumpy path, I wouldn't go back to the way I was before the HRT. It really has helped me tremendously.

    Happy new year, everyone!
  • ddsb1111
    ddsb1111 Posts: 586 Member
    edited January 17
    Just thought I’d give an update for those considering HRT. Firstly, I know it’s not for everyone, and not everyone will want to take it. But it’s been life changing for me. I’m on month 4, and the difference is amazing. Symptoms of peri vary but being able to sleep, not lose as much blood, the huge reduction in hot flushes and just generally feeling so much better. My ability to perform at my sport has radically improved - due to the sleep and better periods I suspect - and I’m just not exhausted any more. I thought my low mood was due to feeling wretched and I feel much happier, calmer and just generally “with it”.

    I wanted to sail smoothly through peri and out the other side without hormones but I just couldn’t. For me, this is a workable solution and I feel SO much better.

    Im reading different responses to HRT and weight gain. Did you experience anything like that? Or did it help because you regained energy? Did it effect your hunger at all?
  • claireychn074
    claireychn074 Posts: 1,286 Member
    ddsb1111 wrote: »
    Just thought I’d give an update for those considering HRT. Firstly, I know it’s not for everyone, and not everyone will want to take it. But it’s been life changing for me. I’m on month 4, and the difference is amazing. Symptoms of peri vary but being able to sleep, not lose as much blood, the huge reduction in hot flushes and just generally feeling so much better. My ability to perform at my sport has radically improved - due to the sleep and better periods I suspect - and I’m just not exhausted any more. I thought my low mood was due to feeling wretched and I feel much happier, calmer and just generally “with it”.

    I wanted to sail smoothly through peri and out the other side without hormones but I just couldn’t. For me, this is a workable solution and I feel SO much better.

    Im reading different responses to HRT and weight gain. Did you experience anything like that? Or did it help because you regained energy? Did it effect your hunger at all?
    No impact on hunger at all for me. I started HRT at the same time as a hypertrophy block so I’ve put on about a kg of muscle in c six months - I suspect that would have been harder with my previous symptoms (lack of sleep and near constant bleeding). If I was trying to lose I think it would help me, as I have energy to live well. I’m living, not just existing, if that makes sense.
  • ddsb1111
    ddsb1111 Posts: 586 Member
    ddsb1111 wrote: »
    Just thought I’d give an update for those considering HRT. Firstly, I know it’s not for everyone, and not everyone will want to take it. But it’s been life changing for me. I’m on month 4, and the difference is amazing. Symptoms of peri vary but being able to sleep, not lose as much blood, the huge reduction in hot flushes and just generally feeling so much better. My ability to perform at my sport has radically improved - due to the sleep and better periods I suspect - and I’m just not exhausted any more. I thought my low mood was due to feeling wretched and I feel much happier, calmer and just generally “with it”.

    I wanted to sail smoothly through peri and out the other side without hormones but I just couldn’t. For me, this is a workable solution and I feel SO much better.

    Im reading different responses to HRT and weight gain. Did you experience anything like that? Or did it help because you regained energy? Did it effect your hunger at all?
    No impact on hunger at all for me. I started HRT at the same time as a hypertrophy block so I’ve put on about a kg of muscle in c six months - I suspect that would have been harder with my previous symptoms (lack of sleep and near constant bleeding). If I was trying to lose I think it would help me, as I have energy to live well. I’m living, not just existing, if that makes sense.

    Thanks for your response, it makes perfect sense. I’m glad you found something that’s working! I’m so ready to get my prescription and feel like myself again.