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Old 05-21-2020, 08:21 AM   #1
BirdDancer
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Default Perimenopause questions

I am certainly the age to be experiencing perimenopause. I am 49. A while back, I suspected it could be starting because of my tendency to sweat suddenly with just light activity. Or maybe that was more anxiety? Or my psychiatrist said just being out of shape. I asked my gynecologist about it maybe three or more years ago and she said that I was not yet going through perimenopause. My periods were still normal, so perhaps she was right back then. But these past few months they haven't been.

I had no period at all during the March-April time frame. Then I got it finally the next month and it seemed normal (7 days long, which was my life average period length.) But instead of coming back after the standard 28 to 31 day cycle, I got it a second time only 17 days after the beginning of my previous period. I am now on day 8 of this second one. I think it is almost over, but I am not sure. I have taken an iron supplement recently, given the length.

Is the above normal for perimenopause? Particularly the two periods in a short time? I have been severely stressed out for a good two/three months, about unrelated things. I wonder if that is playing some part? Just missing a period wouldn't have bothered me as much. When I did, I wondered if it was hyperprolactemia from my Seroquel, but maybe not. No lactation.

I did schedule a video session with my gynecologist for mid next week. [I will be fully dressed the whole time ] I had had an annual face-to-face appointment with her scheduled back in March, but it was delayed twice because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Note: I have also had ovarian cysts and cervical polyps for some years now. They have always been benign, but I wonder if one of them is playing a part in my period chaos.
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OTHERS: Propranolol (40 mg), Synthroid (150 mcg), multi-vitamin, iron supplement (during periods)

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Old 05-21-2020, 08:47 AM   #2
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Default Re: Perimenopause questions

If you want to know ask your gynae to have a blood test done to check your hormone levels.
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Old 05-21-2020, 09:46 AM   #3
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Default Re: Perimenopause questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by possum220 View Post
If you want to know ask your gynae to have a blood test done to check your hormone levels.
Thanks, possum220. I will. Maybe she will order other blood tests, too. I have been doing some reading about possible causes, and it seems there are various possibilities. I don't know if she'd bring me in for any physical exam given the pandemic. It appears that they only bring in pregnant women and any possibly severe issue patients, which I hope not to be.
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Diagnosed with bipolar disorder type 1

MY BIPOLAR MEDS: Tegretol XR (1,200 mg), Lamictal (100 mg), Seroquel XR (700 mg), Klonopin (0.5 mg)

PRNs - Seroquel IR (50 to 150 mg max in a day), Ativan (1 mg, up to 3 mg max/day)

OTHERS: Propranolol (40 mg), Synthroid (150 mcg), multi-vitamin, iron supplement (during periods)
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Old 05-21-2020, 10:18 AM   #4
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Default Re: Perimenopause questions

Could be - perimenopause, seems to hit women differently. I agree with getting a blood test done to check your hormone levels.

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Old 05-22-2020, 03:29 AM   #5
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Default Re: Perimenopause questions

I am in perimenopause and kinda actual menopause. It started when I turned 42. Sweating, irregular/no periods. I had bloodwork once and it did not show menopause. I had a uterine biopsy to check my levels too. Then this past fall I had an appt with a new GYN(I am bad with keeping up with it, I admit) and the symptoms were worse. I hadnt had a period from 0ct- dec. They checked my hormones again and I am officially in menopause. I am 45 now.They tried me on a hormone pill but it made me bleed two weeks out of the month. Right before things got bad at the beginning of March I had to follow up with a jerk doctor who basically told me that if the hormone pill was doing that to me I may not be ready for it. I was told to wait a few months and come back to discuss options. It was really hard to be taken seriously due to being "too young" for menopause- even though it can happen at my age. The sweating and insomnia has been the worst part of it. Its not like BPII insomnia. Its a very distinct feeling.
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Old 05-22-2020, 07:00 AM   #6
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Default Re: Perimenopause questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by BirdDancer View Post
Thanks, possum220. I will. Maybe she will order other blood tests, too. I have been doing some reading about possible causes, and it seems there are various possibilities. I don't know if she'd bring me in for any physical exam given the pandemic. It appears that they only bring in pregnant women and any possibly severe issue patients, which I hope not to be.

You dont actually have to see the doctor they can always give you the results on the phone. Pathology is still open in Australia. I hope they are open where you are too.
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Old 05-22-2020, 08:29 AM   #7
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Default Re: Perimenopause questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by sarahsweets View Post
I am in perimenopause and kinda actual menopause. It started when I turned 42. Sweating, irregular/no periods. I had bloodwork once and it did not show menopause. I had a uterine biopsy to check my levels too. Then this past fall I had an appt with a new GYN(I am bad with keeping up with it, I admit) and the symptoms were worse. I hadnt had a period from 0ct- dec. They checked my hormones again and I am officially in menopause. I am 45 now.They tried me on a hormone pill but it made me bleed two weeks out of the month. Right before things got bad at the beginning of March I had to follow up with a jerk doctor who basically told me that if the hormone pill was doing that to me I may not be ready for it. I was told to wait a few months and come back to discuss options. It was really hard to be taken seriously due to being "too young" for menopause- even though it can happen at my age. The sweating and insomnia has been the worst part of it. Its not like BPII insomnia. Its a very distinct feeling.

This sounds frustrating that you have to wait through this. I hope you can get past these symptoms soon. Thanks for sharing about your experience. It is reassuring to me to know that perhaps my symptoms my not be so very concerning.
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MY BIPOLAR MEDS: Tegretol XR (1,200 mg), Lamictal (100 mg), Seroquel XR (700 mg), Klonopin (0.5 mg)

PRNs - Seroquel IR (50 to 150 mg max in a day), Ativan (1 mg, up to 3 mg max/day)

OTHERS: Propranolol (40 mg), Synthroid (150 mcg), multi-vitamin, iron supplement (during periods)
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Old 05-22-2020, 08:31 AM   #8
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Default Re: Perimenopause questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by possum220 View Post
You dont actually have to see the doctor they can always give you the results on the phone. Pathology is still open in Australia. I hope they are open where you are too.

Yes, I was thinking that maybe my doctor would send me for blood tests, at least. I'll see on Thursday. Usually they are done in her office, but perhaps she will send a request to the local phlebotomist outfit, instead. I do know that they are open because I received an email from them stating that they are. They are also doing covid 19 testing there. I don't believe I'll need that.
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MY BIPOLAR MEDS: Tegretol XR (1,200 mg), Lamictal (100 mg), Seroquel XR (700 mg), Klonopin (0.5 mg)

PRNs - Seroquel IR (50 to 150 mg max in a day), Ativan (1 mg, up to 3 mg max/day)

OTHERS: Propranolol (40 mg), Synthroid (150 mcg), multi-vitamin, iron supplement (during periods)
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Old 05-22-2020, 11:45 PM   #9
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Default Re: Perimenopause questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by BirdDancer View Post
I am certainly the age to be experiencing perimenopause. I am 49. A while back, I suspected it could be starting because of my tendency to sweat suddenly with just light activity. Or maybe that was more anxiety? Or my psychiatrist said just being out of shape. I asked my gynecologist about it maybe three or more years ago and she said that I was not yet going through perimenopause. My periods were still normal, so perhaps she was right back then. But these past few months they haven't been.
Quote:
Originally Posted by BirdDancer View Post
In my experience, the sweating is perimenopause/menopause! Why very few MD's know that is beyond me. Even gyn's aren't always realistic. Periods can still be normal, even when perimenopause is occurring.


As for weight - when I was thin I heard "It's because you're too thin." When I was fat I heard "It's because you're overweight."


I'm very cautious about the "weight" excuse when they don't know what else to say.


I had no period at all during the March-April time frame. Then I got it finally the next month and it seemed normal (7 days long, which was my life average period length.) But instead of coming back after the standard 28 to 31 day cycle, I got it a second time only 17 days after the beginning of my previous period. I am now on day 8 of this second one. I think it is almost over, but I am not sure. I have taken an iron supplement recently, given the length.

Welcome to the beginning of menopause, sister

Is the above normal for perimenopause? Particularly the two periods in a short time? I have been severely stressed out for a good two/three months, about unrelated things. I wonder if that is playing some part? Just missing a period wouldn't have bothered me as much. When I did, I wondered if it was hyperprolactemia from my Seroquel, but maybe not. No lactation.

I'm quite sure that psych meds affect our cycles - and many times it was somewhat difficult for me to differentiate between menopause and med side-effects. That said, what you've described (the pattern of your periods, the sweating) is perimenopause, yes.

I did schedule a video session with my gynecologist for mid next week. [I will be fully dressed the whole time ] I had had an annual face-to-face appointment with her scheduled back in March, but it was delayed twice because of the coronavirus pandemic.

That's really good. But here's the thing...find places, whether online or IRL (when we can again meet in groups) - places that discuss menopause with real women going through, or who have gone through, it. In my experience, doctors are not always the best people to share the day-to-day feelings and physical events of menopause with. It's the women who have life experience...they're the ones who can coach you.

There are some valuable menopause sites that I have turned to and been so grateful when women shared their experiences with me, when I was confused or afraid.

Note: I have also had ovarian cysts and cervical polyps for some years now. They have always been benign, but I wonder if one of them is playing a part in my period chaos.

That is not something I know too much about. Well, that's not entirely true, actually. I had a large benign ovarian cyst that had to be removed (it had destroyed my ovary). At the time I paid close attention, but didn't notice that the cyst had affected my periods. But the cyst did seem to have an effect on other peri symptoms - or the peri affected the cyst. EXTREME anxiety that came on very suddenly when I was 48...major hot flashes and terrible sweating (ugh!). Weight gain.

What I noticed about perimenopause was that so many aspects of my physical self changed,over about 4 years. It started out mild; by the time I had almost stopped or stopped having periods there was a lot going on. Physical oddities, periods that were almost hemorrhagic bleeding - then one barely spotting 15 days later. I remember thinking No wonder it's called 'the change'! Because that was exactly what it felt like - a very, very big change.

I had my last period 2 years ago, but I still have mild changes going on. Hot flashes now and then, sweating...sometimes I feel like I stepped into another woman's body.

I hope some of what I've written helps you some, Birdie.
Menopause is an enormous time of changes and needs to be so much more openly discussed in society, just as pregnancy is. Not something to hide.

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Old 05-23-2020, 03:23 PM   #10
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Default Re: Perimenopause questions

@Beth Rags, thank you so much for sharing all of what you did. It was very helpful and reassuring to me. I do want to find a good support site for women going through perimenopause/menopause. Do you have any recommendation(s)? I looked around online a bit, but didn't find a good one. Maybe I'm googling the wrong search terms?

I am on day 10 of this most recent menstrual period. I will say that it has wound down enough that I think today will likely be the last day, for now. I do hope I get a reasonable break from this!

Would you believe that my gynecologist's office left a vmx for me yesterday saying that my doctor is suddenly out of the office on the day I had an appointment? So now I have to get a new one. I thought next Thursday seemed a long time off. Now it will likely be even further into the future. I do have an appointment with her on June 18 for a, hopefully, in-person "routine" appointment. We'll see if/when that happens. I'm long overdue for my mammogram, too.
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Diagnosed with bipolar disorder type 1

MY BIPOLAR MEDS: Tegretol XR (1,200 mg), Lamictal (100 mg), Seroquel XR (700 mg), Klonopin (0.5 mg)

PRNs - Seroquel IR (50 to 150 mg max in a day), Ativan (1 mg, up to 3 mg max/day)

OTHERS: Propranolol (40 mg), Synthroid (150 mcg), multi-vitamin, iron supplement (during periods)
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