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    Old 05-12-2006, 09:19 PM   #1
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    r0cky's Avatar
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    possible hormone imbalance and talking to my doctor

    Hi ladies. I've been trying to get off of my antidepressants for the last couple of months but did so apparently too quickly ... anyway, I have an appointment to go in to see my doctor this coming Wednesday. While I'm there, I was hoping I might be able to get my hormones tested to check for an imbalance - is this something that a regular GP can do? Should I ask for anything specific?

    Some semi-graphic stuff:

    I got my period when I was 12 or 13 (I think I blocked the exact date out from my memory) ... anyway, it has always been rather irregular. By irregular, I mean that it I'm not one of those women whose period occurs on the same date each month. I have never missed a period, though. Mine have always been very heavy ... in fact it wasn't until I started college that they decreased to less than 10 days. Now they are around 6 or so, but are still incredibly heavy. I'm not exactly sure what qualifies as "clots" but depending on what is meant by "clots" I might have them a lot.

    I have pretty bad PMS with pain in my lower abdomen, nausea, increased allergies, mood swings, increased depression, chills, etc. When my period starts, my depression actually DECREASES (I used to say that the only time I was ever really "happy" feeling was actually DURING my period!!), but my stomach gets messed up. Not quite diarrhea, but looser than usual. The menstral cramps are bad as well.

    It has caused me to be iron deficient / slightly anemic too.

    Anyway, on top of that stuff, over the last few years I've noticed increased hair growth in strange places. It's embarrassing to mention, but since this is a forum where hopefully people understand these things, I'll go ahead and mention them: I have hair growth on my toes, on my breasts (which I know is normal to some extent, but I didn't have this until a few years ago), and in the bikini area down the insides of my thighs. I have light colored hair, and the hair in these places is dark hair. I also have some traces of hair on my lower stomach. On top of that, my skin has always been oily, but again when I started college it got noticeably worse. I have break outs and all of my pillows/sheets are discolored from oil in spite of taking a shower before bed.

    I'm not balding on my head, but do notice some hair loss there in the shower. I've always had this, particularly during/after my periods.

    Anyway ... this is really embarrassing and I have to admit that I am a little scared. In doing research on it on the net, several sites mentioned the possibility of cancer/tumors, and so I'm scared ... really scared, actually.

    So I will mention this to my doctor, but what do the hormone level tests entail? Do they require fasting beforehand? What is the likelihood that this is cancer?

    I have never taken any form of birth control pills either, and would rather avoid them if possible ... but from what I've said here, do you think it would be worth getting my hormone levels checked??

    Last edited by r0cky; 05-12-2006 at 09:23 PM.

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    Old 05-14-2006, 04:42 AM   #2
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    Re: possible hormone imbalance and talking to my doctor

    They just draw blood from the arm & send it to a lab.

    Be sure to get both female & male hormones tested. Insist on it. Then get a copy of the test levels for your personal medical records. The copy is usually free but they may charge a dollar per page.

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