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It seems the worst is over, then it starts again.

I never thought I would stop crying, it went on for hours, then days, into weeks. After that, started the rage. Now I completely understand the bumper sticker, "I'm without estrogen and I have a gun". Then I hit a point of apathy to anything..

I've visited this site several times in the past few months, always feeling too rotten to express my own story. Just when I think things are better and the worst is over, it seems to start again. I guess my best advice to any woman suffering is to keep searching until you get results. The other would be not to listen to other people unless they actually have been through what you are going through.

It’s almost a year since the beginning of my hell. It started with a continual series of vaginal/uterine infections, resulting from a possible miscarriage. In three months time I was on eight different antibiotics. After being sent to a wonderful surgeon and doctor for what was thought to be a fistula causing the infections, it was determined it wasn't. None of the antibiotics worked, so I had a D&C done to try to regroup. Within a few days I was in the ER with the worst bladder infection of my life.

Sure enough, after an antibiotic to clear that up, I got yet another infection. The decision was made to do a complete hysterectomy. At that point, I didn't know, nor did I care, what the consequences would be, I just wanted to quit being in so much pain. I was adamant not to go on hormones for fear of weight gain and other side effects.

Coming off the Vicodin after the surgery was the worst. I had no idea what people go through when addicted to drugs. So I decided to go the natural way, against the advice of my doctor. I quickly started the natural supplements. Although I didn’t know what it was at first, the first symptoms of surgical menopause started immediately after stopping the Vicodin. Wow!

People make fun of women with hot flashes, but it is no laughing matter. Of course, my family and I tried to joke about it as I tried to get through, but after having a hot flash every other minute, each one lasting a minute, and not getting any sleep through it all, wore me down quickly. Then the crying started. How can one person's body lose so much water without becoming dehydrated!! I never thought I would stop crying, it went on for hours, then days, into weeks. After that, started the rage. Now I completely understand the bumper sticker, "I'm without estrogen and I have a gun." Then I hit a point of apathy to anything. My give-a-crap factor was out the window. I was ready to quit my job, actually gave my notice, couldn't care less about my husband, kids, family, or whether I killed the barking dog next door (or the ex's).

I finally threw away the fear of weight gain and other horrible side effects, ignored the advice of well-meaning family and friends that, "we did it without drugs and so can you", I went to a doctor and got bioidentical hormones. Within a week I started feeling better and each day was one step closer to normal. Over the holidays I was still battling depression although the other things were better (hot flashes, rage, etc). So I started on Effexor to try to balance things out.

Between the hormones and the Effexor I didn't know if I was coming or going. I was exhausted yet couldn't sleep. The next couple months involved trial and error to find the right dosages of everything. My body reacts immediately to any form of drug in my system, and it wasn't liking any of it. Now, three months later, I think we are much closer. We eliminated the progesterone completely, I'm on a very small dose of estrogen and testosterone (hey, without that testosterone there is no sex-drive at all), and a small dose of Effexor.

After figuring out that the natural supplement taken at night magnified the depression and the regular dose of two daytime tablets gave me a migraine, I am still taking only one tablet of the daytime Estroven. My cell phone is set to beep every time I need to take one of my meds as they are all spread out through the day, otherwise, we all know I'd forget as the brain cells are just not the same after surgical menopause.

I still suffer pain almost daily, that has not been tracked down to a cause. I've been through two CT's and I don't know how many other tests. I still got another vaginal infection, then a bout of yeast infection that wouldn't go away. What's the cause of it all? That remains to be determined.

In the meantime I'm thankful I haven't killed anyone, and I'm more like my old self (as much as possible through the pain). I still have my job, and my husband and kids haven't left me through it all. My prayer is that we find some answers and get more true results for the pain.

It sucks to be 35, having my body go down hill everyday more and more. Who would have guessed? But for those of you still suffering, don't give up. Keep trying, go to whatever doctors you have to, and keep on keeping on until you find the results you need for you. Be proactive with your own body.

And you know what, who cares that our moms and grandmothers did it without hormones or drugs. We aren't them! And quite frankly, maybe their lives would have been better had they had some of the things we take advantage of today.

After all, raising our children and living in the times we do is nothing like what it was for them. We are a new generation, there is so much out there that can help us to live our lives to the fullest and not have to suffer everyday. Does it make it perfect? No! But it's a lot better than it was a few months ago without the meds.

Amy
Wyoming

 

For more information about hysterectomy:

  • HERS Foundation (Hysterectomy Educational Resources & Services) is an independent, nonprofit women's health education organization providing accurate information about hysterectomy, its adverse effects and alternative treatments.
  • Hysterectomy Awareness, a website dedicated to raising awareness about hysterectomy as well as providing support and resources about the subject.
  • Sans Uteri, a forum for the discussion of the physical and emotional challenges that can be caused by hysterectomy.
  • Hystersisters, a woman to woman support website for hysterectomy recovery. This group offers resources and kindness so that visitors can discover options and make decisions for themselves.

For more information about managing your menopause:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Updated  05/15/2010