Miserable in Menopause (after hysterectomy)
|Here I was
at 31 yrs of age facing a decision that would change my life. I was
so naive, I did not question the doctor and did not realize the consequences.
About two days after surgery, I was in total menopause.
From the day I got my first period it was a nightmare. They were always
very heavy and would go on for days (7-9). I thought this was normal for
everyone. By the time I was 26, I started bleeding one day and it went
on for a couple of months. I finally went to the doctor and was told I
had an ovarian tumor. I was in the hospital the next week and they removed
my left ovary and a portion of my right (it was not cancer).
The doctor then told me if I wanted to have children then to hurry up
and try, because he was unsure if the tumors would come back. I luckily
had two childred within 18 months of each other. I was on a regular schedule
of getting pap smears every 6 months. In the fifth year after my first
surgery, I thought I was home free when the doctor found that my right
ovary had a tumor. He recommended a complete hysterectomy.
Here I was at 31 yrs of age facing a decision that would change my life.
I was so naive, I did not question the doctor and did not realize the
consequences. About two days after surgery, I was in total menopause.
I told the doctor I was having hot flashes and extreme night sweats. He
put me on Premarin .625 and yes it did work. My symptoms did subside and
I did feel better. He told me I would have to stay on Premarin until my
late 40s into my 50s.
Then this past year when I went for my mammogram, they found a small
nodule on my right breast. They also did an ultrasound. The surgeon said
that he does not feel it is anything to worry about at this time due to
the shape and size, but I will have to go for ultrasounds every six months
to keep an eye on it. He also told me that because I had been on Premarin
for 14 years that I was at a higher risk of breast cancer. He told me
that I would have to get off Premarin immediately. The Premarin might
have helped me when I was younger but now at my age it was putting me
more at risk for breast cancer.
I also was diagnosed at that time with osteopenia and high blood pressure.
I am now taking blood pressure medication and calcium with Vitamin D every
day. I refused to take Fosomax (afraid of the side effects) until my next
All I know is this...ever since I went off Premarin in February of this
year, all hell has broken loose! I probably should have been weaned off
the Premarin and not just stopped cold turkey. Within a week of coming
off Premarin, I was in total menopause again. I felt like I hit a wall.
I am exhausted all the time, I have headaches, my white count has been
low since the summer. I had a positive ANA and am due to be tested again.
I have had weight gain. I am now having allergic reations to things that
never bothered me before. My joints, especially my knees, ache. I am having
trouble sleeping. My hair is thinning. I could cry at the drop of a hat.
Lots of up and downs.
Overall I just don't feel good and haven't felt good in a long time.
Some days it is such a struggle just to get up and go to work. I have
no energy. My sister referred me to this website and I am so glad. I cried
when I started reading the articles and stories. I want to look for ways
to start feeling better and any suggestions or help would be greatly appreciated.
Christine in Massachusetts
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.
Awareness, a website dedicated to raising awareness about hysterectomy
as well as providing support and resources about the subject.
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.