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Old 03-28-2008, 11:13 AM   #1
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dsan0614 HB User
Question Hormones/Vitamins After Hysterectomy????

I am just wondering what type of hormones have worked for others after a Total hysterectomy? Also did your Dr. recommend any vitamins? I'm 36 and had at Total Hysterectomy 7 months ago. I'm on Estradiol tablets, but my stamina, energy, and sex drive are all VERY, VERY low.

THANKS

 
Old 03-31-2008, 05:44 PM   #2
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TatCat HB User
Re: Hormones/Vitamins After Hysterectomy????

Hi,
I don't really have any information for you, I am trying to figure out the same things. I just had a LAVH/BSO on 2/13/08.
My Gyn/Onc started me out on Premarin .03mg, it seemed to be ok, but I wanted to be on a bio identical estrogen. I tried the Vivelle dot 0.025mg, and after a few days the insomnia was back, vaginal dryness, and mood swings. So my Gyn is going to have me try Estrogel... we'll see.
As far as vitamins go, I am taking something for calcium and vitamin B complex.
Hopefully, someone here will give us some info..

Cat

 
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Old 03-31-2008, 11:32 PM   #3
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jill60 HB User
Re: Hormones/Vitamins After Hysterectomy????

I am on a bhrt & I feel great, having had my hysterectomy last yr.

jill60





Quote:
Originally Posted by dsan0614 View Post
I am just wondering what type of hormones have worked for others after a Total hysterectomy? Also did your Dr. recommend any vitamins? I'm 36 and had at Total Hysterectomy 7 months ago. I'm on Estradiol tablets, but my stamina, energy, and sex drive are all VERY, VERY low.

THANKS

 
Old 04-01-2008, 01:16 PM   #4
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dsan0614 HB User
Re: Hormones/Vitamins After Hysterectomy????

O.K., I feel kind of odd, but I don't know what all these abbreviations are for What is the b for in bhrt? Is it Bioidentical??

I'm finally going to see a different Gyn. in a month. Boy, do I have a list of questions for her.

Thanks for the replies

 
Old 04-01-2008, 03:42 PM   #5
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TatCat HB User
Re: Hormones/Vitamins After Hysterectomy????

Quote:
Originally Posted by jill60 View Post
I am on a bhrt & I feel great, having had my hysterectomy last yr.

jill60
Hi,
I am so new to all of this that my head is just spinning! While I have to say that in a lot of ways, I feel great but I am confused about HRT.
When you say bhrt, is that something besides the Vivelle dot, or Estrogel?
I apologize for my ignorance, but I am really confused.
Thanks for any info.

Cat

 
Old 04-01-2008, 08:15 PM   #6
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Re: Hormones/Vitamins After Hysterectomy????

I am using bio-identical hormones, hormones that are made for my body. The closest thing to my own ovaries producing. You have to find a compounding pharmacy & they have a list of Dr. that do bhrt.

jill60





Quote:
Originally Posted by TatCat View Post
Hi,
I am so new to all of this that my head is just spinning! While I have to say that in a lot of ways, I feel great but I am confused about HRT.
When you say bhrt, is that something besides the Vivelle dot, or Estrogel?
I apologize for my ignorance, but I am really confused.
Thanks for any info.

Cat

 
Old 04-02-2008, 07:44 AM   #7
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Re: Hormones/Vitamins After Hysterectomy????

O.K., so the B is for bioidentical. I've really been trying to research that and currently have 4 books checked out from the library. Also trying to get ahold of some books by Dr. Vliet. I am going to have to order them.

I'm on Estradiol tablet. From what I've read, I think that is a bioidentical estrogen, not 100% positive??????????

Is what I'm also having a hard time finding out is what hormones are really needed AFTER a TOTAL hysterectomy? I've always heard no progesterone, but seeing where some are on a progesterone cream.

I'm trying to get as much input, advice, opinions, etc. before going to my new dr. in May. My head too is spinning. Atleast this dr. is a female and is supposedly open to all varieties of medicine. (we'll see)

 
Old 04-02-2008, 03:52 PM   #8
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Re: Hormones/Vitamins After Hysterectomy????

dsan0614,

I am two years/eight months post LAVH/BSO and still struggling through the hormone maze of surgical menopause at 35, and believe me I have researched the heck out of this trying to figure it all out, including working with compounding pharmacists, doctors of various specialties (naturopath, endocrinology, gynecology, etc..), searching through medical libraries, talking personally to authors and experts on hormone therapies, and the list goes on. I can offer you some basic info here. The books by Dr. Elizabeth Vliet are excellent and can really help you understand what hormones do for you. She had a hysterectomy herself so she does have some understanding of what we go through. She is a bit biased regarding progesterone and does not believe in it for women who have had hysterectomies, and she also does not believe we should supplement with DHEA. I don't neccesarily agree with her on those but it really is about each individual woman after all isnt it? Not what one doctor thinks we should be on or off. If I left that up to my first doc (the one that did my hysterectomy) I wouldn't be nearly as far along and would still be struggling with horrific migraines from the synthetic testosterone he had me on even though he did not think that was the cause (it was).

Anyway, two other good books are

"Sudden Menopause" by Debbie DeAngelo, RNC, BSN who herself also had a radical hysterectomy and ovary removal and is a registered nurse. She goes into detail about various vitamins and supplements and what they are good for (both for optimal health and for relieving menopausal symptoms) as well as talks about the various hormone therapy options out there, both synthetic and bioidentical (compounded as well as pharmacuetical bioidentical). She seems open minded about all hormone options, including progesterone even if you don't have a uterus.

"Your Guide to Hysterectomy, Ovary Removal, and Hormone Replacement" by Elizabeth Plourde, C.L.S., M.A. this book is really more about the effects of hysterectomy and oopherectomy on women's health, but she does discuss hormone therapy in some detail, and is a proponent of bioidentical hormones including progesterone and testosterone.

There are many other books out there on menopause but I mentioned these because they are geared for women in surgical or chemical menopause or are at least sympathetic to the very different needs we have from naturally menopausal women.

Personally I am on the Vivelle Dot patch which is bioidentical pure estradiol. I am on .075mg but am about to ask to be bumped up to .1mg as I have been exercising more intensively and am finding that I am using up my estrogen faster and having low estrogen symptoms (insomnia, sore feet, night sweats, hotflashes, worse body aches, brain fog, urge incontinence, and memory problems). Unfortunately for me higher levels of estradiol seems to have the effect of giving me sore breasts and yeast infections. I have tried various forms of natural progesterone compounded from a pharmacy and over the counter to try to counteract these estrogen dominant symptoms but it seems to make me more depressed, tired, irritable, and break out with acne. Its a matter of finding the right balance between the two hormones I am sure. Some women seem to have great success with progesterone and in addition to helping with sore breasts and other estrogen dominant symptoms, some women I have talked to report that it gives them a sense of calm and they sleep better. Others find it makes them feel worse. I have also tried various forms of testosterone from a compounding pharmacy (troches, creams, sublingual drops) and I don't seem to absorb it evenly with those methods. I get too many fluctuations and drastic fluctuations in any hormone causes me severe symptoms (migraines being one, extreme mood swings, constant hotflashes, etc). I have not tried pills but am trying to steer clear of those since taking them long term can be hard on the liver. I prefer transdermal methods. I just wish they would approve the Intrinsa patch (bioidentical testosterone) in the U.S. like it is in Europe!

As far as vitamins/supplements, I take Calcium and vitamin D (1500mg/1200 IU) (I have osteoporosis and I can tell you that between upping my estradiol levels and adding the vitamin d, my dexa scores have improved from my first one to the next...I am sure adding the testosterone if I could find a delivery method that works for me would improve them more), and I take cod liver oil and vitamin B complex. It has been reported that hrt can cause a deficiency of some of the B vitamins, especially B2, B6, B12, Biotin. Its too complicated for me to explain in the short space here. I have taken vitamin E and also Evening Primrose oil off and on for my sore breasts. A multivitamin would be helpful but my stomach has trouble with those. I have bad reactions to magnesium supplements too but try to get that through my diet (I eat raw almonds everyday as well as leafy green veggies).

As far as what hormones you NEED after a hysterectomy, it depends on each individual woman. There is no one size fits all here and you have to learn to feel out what symptoms you are having and whether it is from too much or not enough estrogen, progesterone, or testosterone or something else entirely. I have hypothyroidism and those symptoms mimic low estrogen so I have to have that monitored constantly to know which is causing what. Your medical history may also dictate whether you are a candidate for any or all of the hormones. Some women get by fine without hormones, and some...like me...simply can not go without some form of hrt without drastic life threatening symptoms (for me it's suicidal thoughts, for other women it might be high blood pressure caused by low estrogen). It's good that you are doing as much research as you can and arming yourself with knowledge before going in to the doctor. I hope this helps some. I didn't mean to go on so long. Good luck with everything!
Elaine

 
Old 04-04-2008, 11:49 AM   #9
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dsan0614 HB User
Re: Hormones/Vitamins After Hysterectomy????

Elaine,
Thank you so much for your posting. I do understand every womens needs are different. It so helps though reading other peoples thoughts & stories.

The Books...thank you for the additional thoughts. I got 3 books from my library last week & they all mainly focused on non-hysterectomy factors. My library don't have and of Dr. Vliet books right now. I'm trying to get some in there, but planning to just order some on my own. Thanks for the other ideas.........maybe they will have some of those.

I would love to go back on a patch due to the 'liver pass' thing of the pills (currently on Estradiol tabs). I was on a generic Climara, changed once a week. It kept coming off & was big & I had LOTS of breast pain & on & off bloating of eyes, face, hands, stomach. Maybe the Vivelle dot would be better because you get to change it more often. I figure I have another month to really pay attention to things, etc. before going to the dr.

Thanks again for your reply!!

 
Old 04-04-2008, 07:33 PM   #10
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Elaine444 HB User
Re: Hormones/Vitamins After Hysterectomy????

Quote:
Originally Posted by dsan0614 View Post
Elaine,
Thank you so much for your posting. I do understand every womens needs are different. It so helps though reading other peoples thoughts & stories.

The Books...thank you for the additional thoughts. I got 3 books from my library last week & they all mainly focused on non-hysterectomy factors. My library don't have and of Dr. Vliet books right now. I'm trying to get some in there, but planning to just order some on my own. Thanks for the other ideas.........maybe they will have some of those.

I would love to go back on a patch due to the 'liver pass' thing of the pills (currently on Estradiol tabs). I was on a generic Climara, changed once a week. It kept coming off & was big & I had LOTS of breast pain & on & off bloating of eyes, face, hands, stomach. Maybe the Vivelle dot would be better because you get to change it more often. I figure I have another month to really pay attention to things, etc. before going to the dr.

Thanks again for your reply!!
You are welcome! I too have poured over various forums reading of other womens experiences with hormones too. It really helps to know that some of the symptoms we experience arent just us. And to hear what other women have learned and experienced.

I could not tolerate the generic Climara patch at all. That thing was HUGE! I also tried the brand name Climara which was an improvement but still didnt stay on the whole week for me. And something about it did not agree with me at all. I had worse pelvic pain than I already have. And I just felt flu like. The Vivelle Dot is not perfect for me by far but it seems to be the best tolerated hrt for me thus far. It does stay on but I still get fluctuations and by the day of patch change I am REALLY moody and achy. I struggle with very low energy and drive also but have literally forced myself to get to the gym and work out three times a week. It helps a little but I just don't have that umph I had before. I feel like I am waaay older than my age the way all this has changed my body. I am hoping that if I could just find a testosterone that I could tolerate that would make the difference as far as energy. I had my levels tested some time ago and I was VERY low in testosterone (free and total).

I just wanted to mention that another pharmacuetical but bioidentical option out there to consider is Femring, which is a vaginal ring with estradiol. It starts out as estradiol acetate but upon entering your bloodstream somehow it gets converted to straight bioidentical estradiol. Anyway, it is a vaginal ring you wear for three months continuously but it has systemic effects, meaning that even though it is inserted vaginally, it reaches your bloodstream and provides the same type of relief that a pill or patch would. An advantage is that you get more continuous hormone levels and less fluctuations and you don't have to worry about changing it very day or week. I tried it but unfortunately with some vaginal scarring and bladder issues I already struggle with it was too painful for me. But some women swear by it and it is covered by insurance (depending on your insurance of course). Just a thought.

Good luck with your doctor appointment!
Elaine

 
Old 04-04-2008, 09:09 PM   #11
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TatCat HB User
Re: Hormones/Vitamins After Hysterectomy????

Elaine,
Wow! Thanks for posting all of that information! It is great to hear from other women that have been there. I feel like the Docs just don't "get it" sometimes, and they can make you feel like it's just you.
Thanks again for sharing your experience and knowledge. I intend to pick up a couple of the books you have listed so I won't feel so "unarmed" when I want to talk to my Dr and just accept what she decides would be best... it could be, but at least I would have a better understanding and be better able to talk to her.

Cat

 
Old 04-05-2008, 05:57 PM   #12
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Shshi HB UserShshi HB User
Re: Hormones/Vitamins After Hysterectomy????

I had a hysterectomy in 2002, then had my ovaries removed this past December. The day after surgery, my doctor started me on the Vivelle-Dot transdermal patch. I've had no problems with surgical menopause at all - no hot flashes, not mood swings, nothing. Except for my lovely 8" scar, I'd never even know that I'd had surgery.

A lot of women have great success with the Vivelle-Dot. You might want to discuss it with your doctor.

 
Old 05-13-2008, 05:20 PM   #13
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Re: Hormones/Vitamins After Hysterectomy????

When I was only 23 they had to remove my uterus, then 10 years later I had I a complete hysterectomy, I have been on Premarin 1.25 for 21 yrs now, and I can tell you I have never had a problem. I feel great, no hot flashes, sex drive is great, I guess the only problem I have is cysts in both breasts which may or may not be caused by the hormone, but I have NO intentions of stopping hrt's.. I have no mood swings and my doc say's I will not go thru menopause unless I stop my hrt which I do not intend to do. I know they say you should not be on hormones that long and I know some doc's say it's bad for you, I do see my doc every year and have a full physical and so far all is good. I feel that once you find the right med's for you and your comfortable with the way your feeling stick with it. And for those who do not have a doctor that does not explain everything in full detail........ FIND a new doctor. This is a major step in ones life when you have to have a hystrectomy make sure you know what your getting into, make sure you completely understand everyting. Good luck..........

 
Old 05-13-2008, 06:06 PM   #14
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Re: Hormones/Vitamins After Hysterectomy????

Well, I finally had gotten into my new dr. She is great & checking all kinds of stuff (vitamin levels, thyroid, hormones). She is much more thourough & thoughtful than my previous dr. She told me I need to be taking Calcium & D along with a multivitamin (no iron). She feels a lot of my symptoms may be due to a lack of testosterone. But, due to all the FDA warnings, just started me on Estratest and we will re-evaluate after a month or two and discuss it more. I really prefer to be on a bioidentical medicine.

So far it has been 3 weeks & my energy level is still terrible. I actually start to feel depressed many days too. The Estratest is helping with the brain fog & in the sexual department though. NOTHING seems to help with my major fatigue. I can't wait to go back & go over all my results.

Thanks again for the other postings and information!

 
Old 05-13-2008, 07:43 PM   #15
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Re: Hormones/Vitamins After Hysterectomy????

I agree! I have been on the Vivelle Dot now for four weeks (I had a TAH/BSO on 4/15)
and I have yet to experience a hot flash,mood swings, etc. So far surgical menopause is not what I thought it would be. The only negative is that the patch is going to cost me $50.00/month!

 
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