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View Full Version : Women issues - men might not want to read this, but if they do, they're welcome to


CaroPhoenix
02-25-2009, 12:28 AM
Here is some background, for those interested. (Again, men, you don't have to read if women issues make you squeamish).

I have all but 2 symptoms of Polycystic ovary syndrome (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polycystic_ovary_syndrome#Symptoms). Also, my ovaries are actually health looking - no cysts in sight of my ovaries for miles. Which has not only confused my current gyno (but my gyno before him) and my GP (general practitioner) doctor.

However, since February 2004, I have not had a visit from "Aunt Flo". My gyno has put me on a low estrogen form of birth control (Yaz) and has told me not to worry as things like this sometimes happen. I have gained over 50 pounds in about 2 1/2 years, but I have maintained my weight (being within 5 pounds +/-) for the past 6 months.

end the background stuff

For the past 2 months, I have been having what seems to be, Aunt Flo saying "hello" to me. In plain English, I've been getting pains in my sides (on my left last month & my right this month) that used to signal I'd be getting my visit in about a week. I've been getting cramps (mild compared to what I used to get) but they are more constant than before. I've had the nauseous feeling I usually get when I've got my visit. I've even gotten the PMS. Also, and this is important, I have no desire to be touched (by anyone, not just my husband). And I don't mean, I don't want people touching me, I mean I want absolutely no one and nothing touching me (i.e., if I could go about naked for a week, I would because anything touching my skin makes my cramps, naseau, and PMS even worse).

The question I have, and I know this might be silly sounding, is this: should I call my gyno and tell him what has been happening for the past 2 months? Or should I wait until my next appointment - which won't be until the end of July?

It's making me nervous, because since I haven't had a visit in so long, I'm afraid the "dam" will burst and everything will gush out at once. (Not that it's a possibility, but I do have an overactive imagination).

blas
02-25-2009, 12:41 AM
Go now...faster! You might have a cyst...that may be part of the pain. It might not just be cramps.

The doctor needs to know stuff like this.

Shpepper
02-25-2009, 12:42 AM
I would call your Doc and talk to at least a nurse. If things are this bad then the doc should know. There are other things that might be going on as well and I always say that it's better to call and ask then wait and have it be something major. Give your doc's office a call tomorrow and see if they do nurse consults. They do them here and what happens is you tell teh nurse what's going on and sometime the nurse can make recommendations on what you whoudl do and other times they say that youu need to see the doc and willtry to get you in sooner than planned.

Good luck and I hope that you feel better soon.

KiaKat
02-25-2009, 12:44 AM
I would let your GYN know. It could be any of a number of things that really need to be examined now, rather than later.

So, a question then (feel free not to answer) - was Child result of IVF, or 'natural?' And were things worse before pregnancy, or after? I've heard that pregnancy can clear up PCS and other similar disorders.

CaroPhoenix
02-25-2009, 12:51 AM
Thanks everyone. I'll give my doc a call in the morning.

I know he doesn't have a nurse that I can consult with so I'm just going to have to leave a message for him to have him call me back. He's a really good doctor, so I know he'll get back to me within 24 hours if not sooner.

Kiakat - Child Rum was natural. My "visits" have always been erratic and I actually thought I could never get pregnant. When I got pregnant, I was happy. I tried to breastfeed (which cuts into the visits - even making them stop as your body is concentrating on making milk for the baby and not wanting to do anything else for at least 6 months to a year). I had my period from the time I stopped breastfeeding until 4 months later. Then it stopped completely (at first I thought it was because of stress because we had just gotten Child Rum out of the P.I.C.U. and then I got really sick the next day so my body just decided not to do anything).

Oh, yeah, another thing I forgot. Back in the late part of 2007, I was spotting a few times a month for about 2 or 3 months and that stopped also.

Sorry if this is long and TMI. But yeah, y'all are probably right and I do need to let my doc know.

BookstoreEscapee
02-25-2009, 12:54 AM
Call, tell them what's going on, and see if they think you should come in right away or if they think it can wait. And if talking to them doesn't make you feel better, make the appointment anyway.

Some doctors also do email consults. You might see if your doc does that.

TOLady
02-25-2009, 01:23 AM
Good to see that you're going to be seeing your Dr.

Its so hard to know that something is wrong and not know what is going on. :(

I would have your Dr. check into possible dermoids - http://yourtotalhealth.ivillage.com/ovarian-health-what-dermoid-cyst.html

I had them and they are excrutiating :cry:. I had Auntie Flo visits almost every day for more than 2 years and no one could find an answer, but they manifest in other ways including not having a period.

Insist on every test possible. It's not in your mind (sorry, I'm a bit bitter they didn't find out sooner - they kept saying there was nothing wrong until I insisted they go further!).

Dermoids were not apparent during physical examins and only showed up on MRIs and ultrasounds and they were HUGE - 7cm (small lemon) and 11cm (small orange) each!

I was so sensitive to people being around me - touch, smell - I'm surprised my SO still married me. I had surgery to remove the dermoids, but am on a really high dose - Micronor - that does decrease the drive for sure. Not visits from Aunt Flo (unless I miss ONE and then there's hell to pay!)

Crossed fingers for you ...

Let me know if you want more information.

RecoveringKinkoid
02-25-2009, 03:10 AM
July? No, what are you kidding? Honey. Doctor. Now. :(

iradney
02-25-2009, 04:14 AM
RUN, do not walk to the doctor, IDR. Seriously, there is something not right...
*HUGS*

Sliceanddice
02-25-2009, 06:19 AM
PCOS can have not so visiable cysts, i have it and never had a cyst on my ultrasounds.
go to the doctor yes and also look for endometreousis, i also have this and it can cause massive cramps around that time of the month.
it can also prevent your period because it is when the mentriel tissue to grow put side the uterus.

Lady Legira
02-25-2009, 12:41 PM
I would have your Dr. check into possible dermoids - http://yourtotalhealth.ivillage.com/ovarian-health-what-dermoid-cyst.html

I had them and they are excrutiating :cry:. I had Auntie Flo visits almost every day for more than 2 years and no one could find an answer, but they manifest in other ways including not having a period.

Dermoids were not apparent during physical examins and only showed up on MRIs and ultrasounds and they were HUGE - 7cm (small lemon) and 11cm (small orange) each!


I have a Dermoid cyst and I'm currently waiting for a date for the removal of it. Mine is 6cm and is uncomfortable but not painful. Then again I got no pain with Kidney infections, bladder infections or having the kidney removed so I may be strange like that. :rolleyes:

My periods have always been odd but lately they had been worse. I was getting them up to three times a month, never very heavy but annoying. Along side I was getting terrible cramps and generally feeling a bit off. I was going to mention it to the nurse when I got my next set of pills but the nurse decided to rant at me about my weight so I didn't (I'm a bit overweight but not terribly) . Instead when I was sterilised the Surgeon spotted it while he was clipping my tubes.

I was just thankful that I didn't have a cyst like my sister's bf mother which was 2 Stone (28 pounds or 13 kilos approx) when they took it out!

CaroPhoenix
02-25-2009, 04:09 PM
Well, I left a message on my doctor's voicemail. He's really good about returning phone calls (barring any unforeseen happenings like one of his patients goes into labour early and OMG! he has to be there like yesterday). According to their website, they cannot answer medical questions over e-mail (http://www.drsallenandforrest.com/ContactUs.htm) so that was out of the question.

I'll just be here, twiddling my thumbs until I can hear from my doc. I'll update with whatever we decide.

Thank you everyone. :)

Phoenix79
02-25-2009, 04:35 PM
I have PCOS, and I either have a visit from Auntie Flo, or I don't. There is no in between for me, I never spot at all.

I noticed when I started exercising, my cycle became more regular, but it's still wacky.

Glad you called your Dr. - the pain alone sounds like a decent enough reason to at least check with him. I have cramps, but they're never more than I can handle.

It could be a cyst, but it sounds like it could also be something more serious, so running it by your doc sounds like the best idea to me!

Hope you feel better soon!

Phoenix

KiaKat
02-25-2009, 04:48 PM
*thinks*

Yeah, you might want to check for Endomitriosis. Some of the symptoms are similar to PCOS, especially in regards to menstruating. I've known a couple women who, because of where the lesions attached, *couldn't* have a proper period until they were surgically removed. Although they were both extreme cases, not at all normal.

I just get to deal with massive cramps and all sorts of fun digestive issues when I'm on mine, or if doc screws up and tries an estrogen/progesterone BC for me. It's the progesterone that causes the problems for Endo patients, because that's the primary hormone that builds up the uterine lining. Because Endo is the result of uterine cells migrating into the abdomen and pelvis, weird things happen during that 14 day build-up period.

CaroPhoenix
02-25-2009, 08:29 PM
Doctor called (finally!) and said I had to come in for an appointment.

I'll be going to his office on March 3 at 11 AM. He wants to run blood work & have me go for a sonogram. And he, of course, just wants to talk to me to see how things are going anyways.

I hope everything goes well. Now I'm really worried. As soon as he said, you have to come in for an appointment, I was like :cry: to myself.

Send me good vibes please.

AdminAssistant
02-25-2009, 10:35 PM
Don't worry about it, Rummy. It could be something that someone has mentioned, it could be something else. It might be something extremely minor, or something potentially more serious that the doctor can nip in the bud. You're doing the right thing by going - but don't worry about it until you get there. :D

CaroPhoenix
02-25-2009, 11:08 PM
Thank you AdminAssistant. :p

I am a worry wort. I will admit to that. But I'm not going to worry so much that I can't think about anything but the appointment. I've told my mom, but that was it. I'm waiting until Mr. Rum gets home to tell him (if I'm still awake by that time).

I'll let y'all know what type of tests my doctor wants to give me when I get back from the appointment.

Seshat
02-26-2009, 12:06 AM
Don't fret. If the doctor thought it was THAT dangerous, he'd get you in today-if-not-sooner.

The fact that he didn't means the things it might be are all just things he wants to deal with promptly, but they're not that urgent.

BookstoreEscapee
02-26-2009, 12:24 AM
~~~~~~~~~~~
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Good vibes and :hug:
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~~~~~~~~~~~

CaroPhoenix
02-26-2009, 12:33 AM
Thanks everyone.

I told Mr. Rum about how I had an appointment with my gyno; a full 4 months before my yearly because of problems and all he said was 'uh huh' - not sure if he was distracted by work or whatever, but it did piss me off. I told him that Dr. Forrest might be ordering thyroid tests & a sonogram and maybe other things, and he just sat there staring at the TV ... still not sure if he heard me.

My mom was exasperated when I told her. Said I should have waited until my yearly.

Yeah ... seems the only support I'm getting is from this board. :cry:

(I do have an IRL support system, but 1. She's in Florida and 2. Her husband's in the ICU and I don't want to worry her about me while her husband's sick too).

TTAZ
02-26-2009, 05:28 AM
Okay, here's my 2 cents as a fellow PCOS sufferer-

1. Regular ovulation can be as painful as a cyst, just because there is no cyst at the time of the sonogram, doesn't make the pain any less awful

2. You'll likely get a barrage of blood tests including thyroid checks, hormone levels (especially androgen levels), and possibly a glucose tolerance test. If you've never had a GTT, I'm sorry. If you have, then you already know the #1 rule is "don't puke".

3. Go on metformin or actos. It will help. Yes you should watch what you eat, yes you should exercise regularly, but life sometimes gets in the way and a lot of that good for you stuff is more expensive than their less-nutritious counterparts. In these times, every penny is being pinched, especially regarding groceries.

4. Watch your potassium intake on Yaz. It contains a potassium sparing diuretic (used to help flush out androgens) so if you're a big fan of bananas and potatoes, watch it.

5. PCOS is a metabolic disorder not a girly problem. Ob/Gyns get stuck with the cases because the way the disease is caught is when it manifests itself as girly problems. The problem with this is Ob/Gyns have enough to worry about without becoming experts in endocrinology, so they can be rather blase about the whole thing. Not their fault, but the best thing you can do is educate yourself as much as possible.

6. With so much still unknown about PCOS, the general basis for a diagnosis is (and this is a direct quote from my former Ob/Gyn) "If you have the symptoms, you have it, no matter what the blood tests might say".

7. Check your local library for Living With PCOS For Dummies. It's a good read.

I went undiagnosed for several years until by an off-chance I was assigned a GP that was once thought to have PCOS, and knew what to look for. It can drive you batshit out of your mind crazy. You are very very lucky to have so many folks IRL or on this board to talk to and send virtual hugs and sugar free cookies to.

PM me anytime, and good luck.

CaroPhoenix
02-26-2009, 10:59 AM
Thank you TTAZ for the information.

As for #4, not only am I taking Yaz, but I'm also taking BenicarHCT (which is a blood pressure medication). Blood pressure meds take away your potassium, so I'm either balanced with the potassium, or I need it. Is there a potassium test out there?

I have to go to the library anyway today as I have to return some videoes. I'll look up the book then.

I've also been very run down lately. And easily getting colds (or at least runny noses and sneezing all over the place).

I tried to talk to Mr. Rum again before bed. He was too interested in reading his Wizard Magazine that he had picked up at one of the local comic shops last night. I think he's avoiding talking about it as it makes him nervous? I have no clue. He wouldn't talk to me. :cry: Darn it! I need his support. :mad:

Ah well ... I hope things start getting better health wise for me soon.

Dawnchaser
02-26-2009, 05:40 PM
Okay, here's my 2 cents as a fellow PCOS sufferer-
3. Go on metformin or actos. It will help. Yes you should watch what you eat, yes you should exercise regularly, but life sometimes gets in the way and a lot of that good for you stuff is more expensive than their less-nutritious counterparts. In these times, every penny is being pinched, especially regarding groceries.


Yes, definitely go on something like metformin. I personally have some side effects from it that I can't handle - so I don't take it even though I really should. Most people I know who have taken it do fine and/or have less severe side effects.

I also took something for the hair growth for awhile, maybe Spironolactone. It was a name similar to that in any case. That stuff interacted poorly with the birth control and make my periods go even wonkier. So I stopped taking it as well. So now I just deal as best I can, and get waxed when I can afford it :(


I'm lucky that my husband and I both come from families with huge medical backgrounds so our families "get it" for the most part, and my husband is pretty much unphased by any discussion or description of any medical issues. He is concerned about my weight, especially in relation to the PCOS and symptoms but I never feel like he's really giving me a hard time about it. He knows with PCOS and fibromyalgia it's harder for me to lose weight. The in-laws are disappointed about the fertility issues, but to be honest...my husband and I don't really mind that. Could change in the future and then we will look into options I suppose.

But yes, it does sound like Mr Rum is having some squeamishness or just general fear that something is seriously wrong. He needs to understand that PCOS is not fatal, it's just a BIG pain in the ass. Diabetes can be fatal of course, but with proper care you can live a long time happily.

Sliceanddice
02-27-2009, 04:04 AM
3. Go on metformin or actos. It will help. Yes you should watch what you eat, yes you should exercise regularly, but life sometimes gets in the way and a lot of that good for you stuff is more expensive than their less-nutritious counterparts. In these times, every penny is being pinched, especially regarding groceries.



unless your me, metformin made me sick as hell and screwed up my digestive system.
and TTAZ you forgot the increased risk for 'girl' cancers. Uterian, ovarian, filobian, and even breast due to the hormone problems.

TTAZ
02-27-2009, 04:39 AM
Metoformin works very well for me, at first if I even ate a single grain of sugar I took off buzzing like a mosquito with a coke habit and ADHD, but after awhile I calmed down a lot. It isn't a miracle drug by any means, and of course you have your side effects. Slice, I am sorry it played such hell with you since it helped me such a great deal. Did you try Actos?

There is one more side effect of metformin to keep in mind though, IT WILL MAKE YOU FERTILE WHERE THERE WAS NO FERTILITY BEFORE. Gotta love it, man. Here I was, supposedly infertile, on birth control pills, and watching a stick turn blue. "Holy shit" was the least of what I said. Then the cherry on that sundae was when I was putting away my pill bottle later that week I noticed the good folks at Fry's put a new sticker on it "WARNING: MAY CAUSE AN INCREASE IN FERTILITY". Cheers, guys.

The other fun bit of that was going to renew my AHCCCS (medicaid) and the lady behind the desk asked me if I was there to renew my medical, and I said "Yeah, but between you and me (rub the huge belly), y'all should get the money back for those pills you paid for." Best laugh she'd had all day.

So, back on topic, Madam Rum, watch out if you do go on meds and don't want any more kids right now. Double wrap it, if you catch my drift, when you can stand to be touched again.

Sliceanddice
02-27-2009, 03:10 PM
my doctor told me the problems where out weighted by the benifits but since my cramps got worst my blood suger went crazy i got extra teary from lack of energey and for some reason broke out i stopped witht he metformin and just took my bc i felt alot better right away.

though it is nice to know if my system can handle metformin i might beable to get pregnant.

CaroPhoenix
02-27-2009, 07:44 PM
I'd need to lose a lot of weight before I got pregnant again. I'm 272 - a plus-sized woman and then some. :D

Well, I'll keep everything in mind. My mom doesn't think I should bring up either the endometriosis or the PCOS, just listen to him, but I don't think that's right. What do y'all think about that?

Sliceanddice
02-27-2009, 07:50 PM
I'd need to lose a lot of weight before I got pregnant again. I'm 272 - a plus-sized woman and then some. :D

Well, I'll keep everything in mind. My mom doesn't think I should bring up either the endometriosis or the PCOS, just listen to him, but I don't think that's right. What do y'all think about that?

you should mention your problems, listen to him then ask if it could be either of them and take the tests even if he doesnt think it is, just say you want to cover your bases, and you should always mention your worries.

i read a story where one women thought she might have PCOS but never brought it up until she meet one doctor who didnt do anything and then she went to another who said she was certain she did have PCOS ran a test and found out not only did she have PCOS but it had been untreated so long she had cervical and uterian cancer and she needed surgery right away.

AdminAssistant
02-27-2009, 08:23 PM
Depends on how much you trust your ob/gyn - but he's a doctor, we aren't. I wager he would have a better idea of what's going on with you than we would. You can always ask, "could it be x?"

TTAZ
02-27-2009, 08:49 PM
Bring it up. It might not occur to him, and if he's not very knowledgeable about the condition, he would know to look it up, or he might be able to recommend someone who is knowledgeable about PCOS.

Like I said before, the first time I EVER heard of PCOS was when my doctor at the time knew about it only because she was tested for it. Prior to her problems, she had never heard of it either.

Good luck, keep us posted.

;)

Seshat
02-28-2009, 10:54 AM
Another way to tell if it's PCOS.

If you go on a diabetic-type diet, and increase your amount of exercise, and your condition improves (over three or six months, not overnight): then you have an insulin disorder.

And PCOS is an endocrine disorder involving insulin. And (slightly) less risky than diabetes. So at that point you hope it's PCOS, not diabetes.


On the plus side, though, you'll have proof that improving your condition is within your control! :D


Seriously, there are two ways to manage PCOS. By manipulating the insulin system (metformin, diet-and-exercise) and by manipulating the repro hormones (the pill, HRT).

Do whichever works for you: but the diet-and-exercise is the most generally helpful method of all of those, and has the fewest side effects. If you can get good results with that, go for it.

.... so sayeth the woman with both fibromyalgia and PCOS.
I can manage five minutes of intentional exercise a day without aggravating the fibro. BUT even five minutes of gentle exercise a day improves things. It doesn't have to be much to help!

persephone
02-28-2009, 03:23 PM
I would try not to stress yourself out about the appointment too much. My guess is that the doctor is just taking precautions and being sure it's not anything really really serious. From what you said, he sounds like the kind of doctor that would rather fit you in and get you an appointment early and confirm that it's nothing than wait to your annual and find out it's nothing. I'm sure if he thought it was something really really bad, he would have found space for you same day.

I'll be thinking about you and sending you good vibes. Keep us posted and I hope you feel better.