My recent adventures and some advice, if possible….
I will preface this by saying that I took BCP for 15 years, not knowing all the risks and dangers, I didn't stop until I was 39 and suffered full CHF, with PAH and a heart murmur. I'll try to include as much info as I can, so if any help/advice can be given everyone knows what they're working with…
From symptoms when I was a kid, very heavy periods with major cramping as I got older, difficulties getting pregnant and pregnancy complications, I believe I was ALWAYS progesterone deficient and just never knew it.
I started showing perimenopausal symptoms when I was 40, though I didn't recognize them at the time, mainly because just some months were bad with a heavier than normal cycle, but most months were still fine….it got slightly worse just before I turned 41 last year. (This makes sense, because I have since discovered that my mother and maternal half-sisters all went into menopause between 47 to 48 years of age, so a few years early.)
Then this year, just before I turned 42, complete chaos took over. I started getting cramps for the first few days of my cycle, which became completely erratic, sometimes 28 days, sometimes just 21, or 25 and the clotting, plus bleeding through tampons…..initially after stopping the BCP I was strict 30 days like clockwork. Then the hot flashes started, feeling emotional, feeling irritable….and you know how that goes, it eventually gets to the point that your head is so foggy and you can't control yourself, so you're afraid you're losing your mind. The insomnia was also hideous…and please think of the dangers, since I'm a heart patient.
There were even times I ended up in hypertensive crisis, with a high heart rate and palpitations and had to go to the ER.
In March things got even worse, I had hot flashes so bad they hurt, I almost ended up in the ER due to the pain and started getting horrible breast pain a few days a month and the first few days of my cycle…..my doctor blew me off saying: "We don't treat that. Try the over the counter estrogens." …anything that raises my estrogen levels made me an emotional basket case, so that was the worst advice ever!!
I Googled my symptoms and discovered estrogen dominance and progesterone cream, so I picked some up and started using it as instructed, a small amount once a day…though I never actually measured it…..as I started to feel better, I got brave and went to twice a day….of course at that rate, the 2oz Source Naturals that I was using lasted a very long time and it did help improve some symptoms…but breast pain kept happening, as well as the hot flashes though they were milder and the irritability. I hadn't read about using it straight through, so I stopped once I started my period which was in early April….big mistake, everything came back with a vengeance.
I googled some more and read a little on this site, so I started using it all the time, BUT I still wasn't measuring and being consistent. In April my cycle got more erratic, one period for a few days early in the month, then one right at the end of the month into May….and at that time I found the breast lump….turned out I have masses in both, but they are benign cysts, which even the doctor said is due to too much estrogen. I mentioned the cream and she said to take up my dose and don't take a break, some women can't and I was one of them…and I did, but I still wasn't measuring…
And I realize that's why the breast pain, irregular cycle, hot flashes, irritability and etc. all continued, I was basically not being consistent and had myself in a constant state of estrogen dominance. (I was getting about 8 days out of a 2ounce container, so only about 125mgs a day, give or take….most likely 300mgs one day, then 50 the next and etc.)
It's actually been great for my heart and blood pressure, my BP is staying at good levels, even low sometimes and the heart rate problems I used to have are gone, so my cardio is very happy about my using it. :-)
Anyway, I had finished my period on May 6th, but started spotting on the 25th and it just didn't stop….so I came back to this site and decided to follow your advice and take the dosage up higher and to actually measure. However, I didn't go to one high dose and stay there, which I know is what likely made me spot even longer….I did two days at about 400mgs, then three at 500mgs, then went to 600mgs. So from May 25th to today, I've only had one day were I wasn't bleeding/spotting….though yesterday it seems I actually just started my regular cycle, as it isn't as light as it was and it's regular red, not the light brown I'd had for the weeks before.
Anyway, I started the 600mgs on the 12th, which is the one day I had no bleeding, my flow started on the 13th….and I have stayed there consistently and plan to stay there for awhile, because I'd really like to get this bleeding to stop….
But the other issues are, with some concerns of it causing PAH and the fact that it took over a year to get me to stop having it after my CHF, I am reluctant to try NAC, though I have picked up Taurine and started 1,000mgs of it yesterday.
I was taking Vitamin D, because mine was found to be low last year, but my body is very sensitive to many things and it eventually became too much, as this most recent blood test showed my level of it was 65, but my calcium was very slightly elevated, so I was told to lay off of it and my multivitamin for a few weeks.
And I apologize for even posting and asking questions, when I am not using NatPro at this time, though I do hope to switch next month, since I'm doubting the consistent dose of the one I'm using, but I can't afford to order it right now….
But, is it possible that the 600mgs will get this to stop soon?
There is a very sexy man planning to visit next month or so and I'd like the spotting chaos to stop by then.
The reason I think I had the one day break and then started my regular cycle is due to the fact that I had 2 days of irritability and anxiety, coupled with tender breasts…and unlike most people, I get hypersexual when my estrogen is really high….and that is all normal for the few days just before I start and the first day or two of flow. I also had hot flashes, though they've been relatively mild compared to the horrible painful ones I used to get….so there's been much improvement and with the helpfulness to my health, I certainly don't want to take a break from my progesterone therapy for a cycle and my doc would prefer I don't either….but I will if absolutely necessary…..I just know I'm still very estrogen dominant.
(Oh and hormonal acne has been a regular occurrence through all of this, though not severe!)
I hope this isn't too confusing, I'm just trying to be thorough, in case someone has some advice. :-)
Oh and the foggy headedness and crazy mood swings did go away almost immediately after starting it, even at the low inconsistent dosing, which is a major relief and has made life a lot easier.
Oh, skipping some symptoms to be conservative, since they may have been caused by other issues, I still scored 73 on the questionairre.
Thyroid has also been checked recently and all is normal, so is kidney, liver, blood count and a full metabolic panel.