Don't know if I'm peri-menopausal or menopausal

by Donna
(New Providence, PA USA)

I am 52 years old. I had a partial hysterectomy 17 years ago, I still have my cervix and ovaries. Needles to say I have not had my period since then.

I have many of the symptoms mentioned on the site and believe I am estrogen dominant... but since I do not have my period how do I know if I am still peri-menopausal or if I indeed am finished ovulating? How do I know which category I fall into so I can properly use the progesterone cream?

Comments for Don't know if I'm peri-menopausal or menopausal

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Jun 24, 2010
Menopause
by: Deborah

Donna, I had my hyst in 2008, I had on ovary left no cervix. I found out that I was thrown into menopause that very day I came out of surgery. I had a very uninformed surgeon that thought I was just depressed and put me on anti depressants. Well after hours and hours of research years of suffering and a family member giving me Wray's website I am finally seeing some very much wanted improvement. I started on progesterone Cream Natpro about a month ago now. Wow does not seem like it has been than long. I am up to 150mg a day three times a day at least, and Wray has me take it whenever my panic attacks come on. I carry it with me where ever I go and rub it on when I feel any of the estrogen dominant side effects bother me. I wish I would have started it in my teens, I should have been on it after my hyst. Hope this helps you! Blessings.

Jun 25, 2010
Don't know if I'm peri-menopausal or menopausal
by: Wray

Hi Donna Judging by your age, and that you had a partial hysterectomy 17 years ago, I would say you are now in menopause. The average age of menopause is 51, but after the uterus is removed ovarian function starts declining within 3-4 years. If you do decide to try the progesterone please use between 100-200mg/day. And as Donna has remarked in her encouraging comment, use the cream as and when needed. Experiment with the amount too, progesterone should not be used as per 'dose' as it's very much dependant on symptoms. The more severe, the more is needed, the converse is true too. Please see our web page on Menopause. As progesterone has a stimulatory effect initially, it's most important that you read our web page on Oestrogen Dominance. This often occurs and is most disconcerting when it does! Take care Wray

Jun 25, 2010
Menopause
by: Wray

Hi Deborah Thanks for your encouraging words! I'm so delighted it's helping you. I wish I'd known about it in my teens too, as I had bad depression then. Such a pity antidepressants are the first line of call, with no thought to what a hysterectomy does to us. If any friend should consider having one, please encourage them not to, and give them this excellent web site to read Reproductive Medicine Take care Wray

Jun 25, 2010
Very similar problem
by: Janet

My own problem sounds very much like yours. I had a hysterectomy at 35 after suffering for many years. I was left with just both ovaries; I wish he'd have taken them as well. 7 years later and my estrogen dominant symptoms are getting worse, literally by the month. I have tried to get both my GP and my Gyn to 'listen' to me concerning this. They have only listened far enough to order blood work and then tell me my levels are in the 'normal' range for peri-menopause. I have tried to talk about those levels in relation to each other (estrogen dominant etc) and they both dismiss me. My Gynecologist went so far as to insist that my 'mood swings' are a result of the medication I take for ADD. When I attempted to tell him that I and my psychiatrist are positive my medication is not at fault, he interrupted me and told me that he knows someone who takes the same medication that I do and so he knows all about the 'mood swings' that it causes. At that point I gave up trying to talk to him about it. So, at this point I've given up trying to talk to anyone about what might be the problem. I'll try the Natpro and see if it makes a difference.
I hope that you are able to find some relief from what you are experiencing too. I know what a dark and awful place it can be.

Jun 27, 2010
Very similar problem
by: Wray

Hi Janet Such a pity we always get a brush off when it comes to the symptoms we suffer. Surely by now, with so many women complaining, they would have realised something is amiss. I've not heard that the meds for ADD cause oestrogen dominance symptoms. Heaven help all the young children, mostly boys, taking them! Your hormone levels could well be in the normal range, but it's the ratio they should be looking at. The range is from 10 to 100, ie you divide the progesterone by the oestrogen. Although I've found if it's higher than 100 we only then feel fine. Your symptoms sound bad, so please consider using a high amount to begin with, about 200mg/day. It's easy to reduce once they've subsided. But before you try it please first read this web page on Oestrogen Dominance. It occurs in many women and is most disconcerting if it does. ADD is often a lack of the neurotransmitter dopamine, which drops with stress. The amino acid tyrosine, the precursor to dopamine, is often low too. Please consider taking this. Other calming aminos for the brain are glycine and taurine. Please take a look at this web site Recovery Systems Take care Wray

Jun 29, 2010
re:similar symptoms
by: Janet

Hi Wray, thank you so much for the advice regarding how much cream to use and other supplements to take. I've never heard of ADD meds causing estrogen dominance symptoms either... and I make a point of reading everything I can in order to be informed about the medications I take. I only began taking the ADD med 10 months ago but had been experiencing a dramatic worsening of my seemingly estrogen dominant symptoms for nearly a year prior. In fact, one of the things that dramatically worsened for me nearly a year prior to starting the medication was in fact my ADD; which I have never before in my life needed to have medicated in order to control. I attempted to tell my gynecologist this and he still maintained that everything was a result of the medication.

I've read alot of the material on the website and did do the questionnaire before ordering the Natpro; with a resulting score of 63. After further reading I'm still a little confused about estrogen dominance versus the higher estrogen levels during the phase prior to ovulation. My understanding of what I was reading is that during the phase before ovulation, estrogen levels are highest and then begin dropping around the time of ovulation. During the luteal phase, progesterone levels begin to rise until menstruation. Do I have that correct? My problem occurs, or worsens dramatically, during the luteal phase; so after ovulation. Although I no longer am able to menstruate, I do experience the hormonal changes. My dramatically worsening symptoms coincide with breast tenderness and (much!) worse water retention. From the time I was a teenager, my luteal phase was always the most off-kilter. What I mean by that is that once I would ovulate and the breast tenderness, water retention, and moodiness would set in, I never knew how long it would be until I would get my period. I would be miserable for anywhere between 10 days up to 6 weeks before finally menstruating and getting relief from all of that. While my periods themselves were horrendous, I would have relief from the other stuff within the first 24 hours.

So if my problem is at it's worst during the time when estrogen is dropping off and progesterone is rising, would that still be estrogen dominance? And is the Natpro really what I need to be using? Thanks so much for all your help!

Jul 01, 2010
re-similar symptoms
by: Wray

Hi Janet I would hope with tyrosine, plus progesterone you won't need the ADD meds. You are right about oestrogen peaking just before ovulation, in fact many women have 'PMS' then too. Progesterone is still very low, it doesn't start rising until after ovulation, only peaking about 7 days later. Oestrogen makes a dip after ovulation, but also rises during the luteal phase, and if the corpus luteum is not making sufficient progesterone, symptoms will be experienced for the entire 14 days of the luteal phase. We do have a chart showing the lows and highs, please see our page Progesterone Therapy. It seems you have always had a lack of progesterone, that you had what is known as a defective luteal phase, when little or no progesterone is made, ie you didn't ovulate each month. Or if you did the corpus luteum was not making sufficient progesterone. So your oestrogen would have been high from the few days before ovulation to it's drop when menstruation begins, but with little to no progesterone you would have had major symptoms. The luteal phase is always 12-14 days long in all women, irrespective of the length of their cycle. Another indication your luteal phase was in serious need of help! The horrendous periods also indicate you were full of oestrogen. Oestrogen is a mitogen, vital once a month to stimulate the endometrium to grow and thicken ready for a possible fertilised egg. But too much and the lining builds excessively. MMP?s (matrix metalloproteinases) are enzymes that break down protein. They play a role in the breakdown of endometrial tissues at the end of the menstrual cycle. If they are over active, as would be the case with an excess of oestrogen in the body, (oestrogen stimulates it?s production), the result is a pathological reaction such as inflammation and excessive bleeding. It?s only when progesterone levels drop at the end of the cycle that the MMP?s can get to work and break down the lining causing our monthly bleed. But with oestrogen continually stimulating more lining, and low progesterone, bleeding continues. The pain that is experienced is caused by prostaglandins, these cause uterine muscles to cramp. The same cramps we get with child birth. Oestrogen is a pro-inflammatory hormone, progesterone is an anti-inflammatory. It suppresses oestrogen, MMP's and prostaglandins, which is why we don't ovulate, bleed or have uterine contractions during pregnancy. My own research into ADD leads me to believe many girls are misdiagnosed. Our problems start in puberty or shortly after as hormones are all over the place, our diet is often not good either. One authority listed the symptoms of female patients, it was merely a list of PMS symptoms! I had nearly 70% of all ADD symptoms, including hyperactivity, but I calmed down when I started using progesterone at 47! I hope it helps you, but don't forget the tyrosine too. Take care Wray

Sep 18, 2010
sleep disorder treatment
by: Anonymous

If sleepwalking is caused by underlying medical conditions, for example, gastroesophageal reflux, obstructive sleep apnea, seizures, periodic leg movements, or restless legs syndrome, sleepwalking episodes should stop once the underlying medical condition is treated http://atozmenopause.com/sleep_disorder_treatment.html sleep disorder treatment .

Oct 26, 2010
Hysterectomy and menopause
by: Flipflop

I am a 47 year old and had a complete hysterectomy 2 years ago but still have both ovaries... I have been having symptoms of peri-menopause but my gynecologist and my primary care do blood work and say that I am not peri-menopause that my hormones are normal... It is frustrating because I get anxious, agitated, cry, experience hot feelings in my face and do not feel like the same person. Anyone else going through this and their doc's are telling them the same?

Oct 30, 2010
Hysterectomy and menopause
by: Wray

Hi there A hyst can throw us into turmoil, in spite of keeping the ovaries. And what tests did they do to check whether you were in P-M? Often progesterone is ignored, and what is normal? Both oestrogen and progesterone can be within the 'normal' range, but if the ratio is out, all hell can break loose. To feel well the progesterone to oestrogen ratio should be over 600:1. Please check this with your results. They probably only checked FSH and LH, as these rise as we approach menopause. But its progesterone and oestrogen which are the significant hormones, progesterone must be dominant to feel well. The symptoms you've given all indicate excess oestrogen and a lack of progesterone. Please have a look at these pages we have on Anxiety, Peri-menopause and Menopause. If you should consider using progesterone, please have a look at this page too, as oestrogen dominance can occur when first using it and is disconcerting when it does. I recommend between 100-200mg/day, anything less tends to make the oestrogen dominance worse. Take care Wray

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