Sick, sick, sick …

January 29, 2010 at 2:45 pm | Posted in Me | 13 Comments
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No I’m not actually sick, I’m just sick to death of the way hormones seem to rule my life. Until Wednesday I’d been menstruating pretty much constantly since before Christmas.  By Sunday last I looked and felt like death warmed up, was bursting in to tears at the slightest provocation (or no provocation) and figured it was time I saw the doc. I knew I’d have trouble when she recommended a tablet that messes with the hormones, but heck, what else are you supposed to do stop a continuous period? So I bit the bullet and went on to Norethisterone (synthetic progesterone). I was a good girl – I didn’t even look at the side effects when I started it on Tuesday. I didn’t even look to see it was synthetic progesterone at the time.

Well the good news is it worked like magic – by Wednesday my seemingly never-ending period had stopped, the hot flushes hadn’t come back and I had very few RA symptoms. By yesterday I felt tired but so much better than I had been feeling. Then last night I woke up at two in the morning with a gnawing hunger pang in my belly – I lay in bed fantasising about porridge with tons of Golden Syrup on it! Fortunately Middle-size Cat and Enormous Cat were both firmly on top of me, purring and being cute, so I resisted the temptation as I didn’t want to disturb them. (Note, disturbing hubby didn’t even enter into the equation – awful, aren’t I? Then again, not much does disturb hubby once he’s asleep!) It’ll pass, I thought.

I woke up again at about six-thirty with a really awful gnawing hunger pang in my belly again! Hmm, I thought, this isn’t good. Heck, it’s Friday. Let’s go wild and have some porridge (instead of the usual and rather better for me Bran Flakes). I had some porridge. The hunger pangs didn’t go away. I made my lunch – beef salad. Normally when I’m making my lunch the absolute last thing I want to do there and then, straight after breakfast, is eat it. Today I could have eaten the whole damn lot. (I didn’t, but I could have done.) Tiny and Middle-sized cats were lucky to get their usual rations of my lunch today!

The gnawing hunger pang in my belly has NOT gone away. I ate a mid-morning snack of soya nuts, I had another slightly later morning snack of a few grapes and some dates. I had an apple. (All this before lunch!) Still gnawing hunger pang in my belly.

I had my lunch. Gnawing hunger pang in my belly. I hate to admit this but I then went to the local bakery. I’m not going to admit to what I bought (and ate) but suffice it to say that Mrs Baker would have been quite shocked if she’d known I was off back to the office to eat it all there and then, but that’s what happened. So would hubby, for that matter. He would have rather hoped I might have brought a bun home for him.  (Sorry darling!)

Guess what? Gnawing hunger pang in my belly – still. My helpful friend Weeny’s response was, ‘You’re hungry? So what’s new?’ (She’s renowned for her sympathy skills – her hubby and I tease her regularly about their lack!) The thing is this isn’t just hungry – it’s like a pain, it has to be pandered to; it’s constantly demanding. I can think of nothing but food. I just want to eat everything in sight. I look at my half-cup of cold coffee and picture a big hot chocolate swirling with cream and marshmallows; I look at the snow swirling around outside and think of ice cream; I don’t quite look at ‘the boss’ and think ‘roast beef’ but believe me I’m not that far from it. And to add insult to injury I’m doing a transcription  all about chocolate!! (I kid you not.)

You know what? I don’t think I’ll be taking any more Norethisterone!  I looked at the side effects this morning and sure enough weight gain and appetite change were nestled amongst them. I’ll put up with a constant period, I’ll live with anaemia and fatigue if I have to, but I really can’t cope with any more of this!

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  1. How very frustrating! My doctor prescribed three-months of medroxyprogesterone last year. He said sometimes it works to “reset” your internal calendar – and it worked quite well for me. I didn’t notice any side effects at all, and don’t need to take it any more.

    Just a thought – when my appetite goes haywire, an avocado or a handful of olives is the most effective snack.

    Hope you’re feeling better!

  2. Good to know it works for some! I’ve had hormone trouble seems like for ever though and anything I ever take for it seems to do bizarre things to me. This is just another one to add to the list! Thanks for the tip re avocados but believe me I don’t think ANYTHING is going to stop this feeling right now … Waaaah.

  3. :(

  4. I guess I was thinking that there are other hormones. One’s not working for you, but there might be a different one that would help without making you so hungry.

  5. I guess you’re right … but past experience (and probably my current hormonally based reactions) makes me think taking anything hormonal is just a nightmare for me … As this is my ‘year of being bothered’ I suppose I should be bothered to go back to the GP on Tuesday! (I’d go Monday but you can’t get through the door on a Monday morning!)

  6. What a conundrum! Never-ending menses and the mess they cause or never-ending hunger pangs — and the unpleasant thrift-store shopping THOSE cause. Have you tried a plant-based estrogen? I’ve some friends who’ve tried creams with that in, purchased at health-food stores for a painful price, but they did seem to help some with menopause symptoms. Another possibliity is grape-seed extract (capsules, and not quite as expensive). I take those. And my doc revealed the deep, dark secret that coffee (cue the dramatic music) can also make hot flashes far worse. I was a deeply addicted coffee fiend; I cut back from three POTS a day to four cups a day, and those are made with half real coffee and half decaf. I did it slowly so as to avoid the nasty withdrawal headaches, but you know what? It worked. I have only a few “flushes” a day (or night) now, compared to feeling like I was on my own personal tropical holiday, day in and day out.

    Best of luck with this, m’dear. What a royal pain in the arse. Feel better.

  7. Sympathy much appreciated – and I hope you’re feeling better too!!

    Weeeell, this may be wishful thinking but I’m hoping that now the period’s stopped, if I come off the tablets it MIGHT not start again … we shall have to wait and see. I’m coming off the tabs as from now. I seriously can’t go through a whole weekend like this. Shut in the office (apart from lunchtime) is one thing – never ending access to the store cupboard at home is quite something else! ;o)

  8. Perhaps it does cause just puuurrrrre hunger. I haven’t had to try to go on hormone pills – yet. But one thing it made me think of is acid reflux. Not because you felt acid going up your throat or chest pain or the typical feelings, but because of the gnawing pain in your stomach. I first experienced that in the early nineties, and it made me think that I was hungry, even though I’d just eaten not twenty minutes before. And if I ate again, gee, I felt better. For about twently minutes or so. If I’d only known to try some kind of acid reducer back then, it might have kept me from putting on a few pounds! Perhaps if you need to try some hormones again, you might consider using an H2 Blocker. Just need to stay away from acid reducers than can interfere with your RA or other medications and watch the timing of when you take it in regards to absorption of other meds.

  9. Hmm, you know, you might have a point … sooooo, if I go and have a biiiiiiiiig glass of milk, that should settle the acid down if that’s what it is, and then I should feel better. Well, any excuse for more foooooooooooood (or drink) so I’m off now to give it a try! ;o) Thanks for the thought. Good point re acid reducers that interfer with RA – I’ve run into that before, but hopefully a big glass of milk will be relatively harmless, and not due to take my MTX until Monday.

  10. How exactly do you deal with a non-stop period… O_o I can only imagine how much money you spend to keep “protected”! I definitely think it is a good idea to get off medication for it, those things have so many side-effects it is scary! I’ve always been against anything that messes with natural body functions (although I guess non-stop menses isn’t quite “natural” – but menstruation itself is) because that’s just asking for trouble.

    Go for it and spoil yourself! Chocolate, ice cream, whatever makes you happy! Sometimes a woman’s time of the month is the opportunity for her to pamper herself and take advantage of it :P

    Hope you’ll feel better and we all await to hear the good news when things are settled again!

  11. LOL! I like the attitude but when a woman’s time of the month lasts all month and when she’s not a small woman in the first place, the whole ‘go spoil yourself’ thing may not work quite so well. :) As to medication, I’m on reams of the stuff for the rheumatoid arthritis, so in one sense a bit more doesn’t worry me, and in another I’m thinking ‘aaaaaaargh – MORE!’

  12. I guess you really need one of those pill-sorters :P My friend just told me she went through a period (lol, pardon the pun) of 4 months without getting hers and she got all worried and stuff… so now I’m starting to wonder whether women DO want their periods or not, lol. What a pain eh? On one hand, you want to have it regularly (unless you’re trying to get pregnant) but on the other hand, when you don’t get it, you wonder if you’re pregnant or something is wrong. Oh the fun of it all!

    Sorry for sounding uneducated, but I take it that RA doesn’t directly affect menstruation/menstrual cycle or does it? My ex used to complain about how often she’d have to go to the washroom during her period to change, etc. and that was only for 4-5 days… how do you deal with it for a month? You spend more time IN the washroom than OUT, eek! Where I live, we have a 1-bag trash limit so I could only imagine how hard it’d be to stay within that limit if a girl was menstruating for a month continuously! PHEW.

  13. oh dear. (hides the pizza). i’m big on sympathy but out of suggestions i’m afraid xfx


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