by Kate
(Berlin, CT)

Hello all! I am in my early 30s and suffering with what I would assume is some hormonal imbalance. Currently my big concerns are moderate hirsutism, hair shedding, and extremely painful ovulation and periods. I am a normal weight and my periods are regular - typically a luteal phase of 12-13 days. I have severe sharp pain the day of ovulation, light to moderate cramping from ovulation to my period, and severe cramping the first day of my period at which point it tapers off. Additionally, I am always cold, and oscillate between anxiety/irritability and depression the two weeks before my period. Other symptoms include: dry skin, dry eyes, fatigue.

My symptoms of hirsutism and hair shedding point to PCOS, however my hormone tests of testosterone and an ultrasound of my ovaries did not indicate PCOS, especially with regular periods. I also have no acne. Thyroid tests (due to always being cold) also came back normal.

Unfortunately I can't afford any more hormone tests and I'm at a loss for what might ail me. I have a history of restrictive eating, though I have been a healthy eater and at a healthy weight for over 5 years. I was also on the pill for about 7 years, have been off now for about 4 years.

When I look up my symptoms, I feel like half of them fall in the "low progesterone" and the other half fall in "low estrogen". I'm not sure where to begin with treatment, and am wondering if you could offer any guidance. Would using progesterone if I have low estrogen be problematic? Is it worth trying just to see if symptoms improve or could this cause other symptoms?

Thanks for your help!

Comments for Kate

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Nov 10, 2016
Dry Eyes and dry skin
by: Renee

Hi Kate,

I read your post, and I was wondering if you have been checked for Sjogren's disease. Symptoms of it are dry eyes, dry skin, dry mouth, fatigue, among others. Also, have you been checked for insulin resistance? There is a wonderful woman named Kathleen Katamura who does bioidentical hormones and she is very knowledgeable. She is located in Stonington, CT and maybe Westerly RI. There is also another really great APRN in East Windsor, CT named Sheryl Marinone. One takes insurance and the other does not. So you might want to contact them and get more information. You can find them both on google.
I wish you the best!

Nov 21, 2016
Thank you
by: Kate

Thank you so much for the suggestions! I was not familiar with Sjogren's, but am reading up on it now. I have been checked for IR, along with testosterone & thyroid - results came back in the normal range, though I know some people are more sensitive to that kind of stuff.

I very much appreciate the suggestions of people to see. It's so hard to find a knowledgeable professional who is willing to look at the whole picture and really try to find out what's wrong as opposed to just brush everything off as "normal" when you know it isn't.

Thank you again for your help, I'll be looking into both women!

Nov 21, 2016
You're welcome
by: Renee

Hey Kate,

You are very welcome. I have seen both women and both are wonderful and will look at the whole picture. Both are what I consider to be functional medicine practitioners. It took me a long time to find someone who would listen to me and help me. I remember, when I was at my sickest point (with a tsh of 95), I made an appointment with a naturopath, who told me, after I explained to her through my tears that I was in great distress and very ill, to just go home and take an epsom salts bath and "take care of little Renee". Needless to say I didn't go back to her again.

Then I found Sheryl who ran the thyroid, adrenal sufficiency and sex hormone tests and put me on natural compounded progesterone and NDT immediately. She put me on the oral progesterone, and I know there is a lot of discussion about oral vs. transdermal. My doctor chose the pills for me to take at night to help with my anxiety and to calm me down. Due to the thyroid and hormone imbalance, I was having extreme anxiety, heart palpitations and adrenaline rushes. It was explained to me that the oral pills are better for me in order to get my blood serum levels up quickly.

I just had blood drawn today to check my progesterone/estrogen levels, so I should have results by next week. My anxiety is down, the heart palpitations are gone and my hair stopped falling out, but I still have horrible PMS, so I think I am not taking enough progesterone. I will know soon. If my levels are normal, then I will have to search for another answer for my two weeks of agony each month.

Take care and good luck! I know you will like both of them very much.

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