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Author Topic: Menopause and Anemia  (Read 2464 times)

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Offline dancer67

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Menopause and Anemia
« on: January 02, 2011, 12:35:33 PM »
Hi All

I hope everyone had a Happy New Year.

I need some "logical" help here. Because my HA kicks in, and sometimes my logic flies out the window. And again, googling does me no good other then send me over the edge.

I am 43 years old. My mother, who is mentally ill, claims she went through menopause at the age of 48. I asked her twice, on two seperate occassions to make sure she was not lying. Both times, she said 48. Okay, so if this is true, I understand that menopause usually happens to you, based on the age your mother went through it. Is there any truth to this?(I don't want to look it up).
My mother also said she just stopped getting her periods, and never had any hot flashes, problems etc. So not sure where that would fit in with me.

Getting back to my anemia. Since I had the Mirena IUD taken out last Sunday, I have been bleeding since Tuesday. I was told I could bleed for up to two weeks. I am sure this is not doing my anemia any good at all. Not to mention I had my period on December 10 and ended on the 15th, and only had about 5 days in between with no bleeding.

I think many of you know of the trouble I had with the last two IV Iron infusions. The first made me deathly ill, the second made my BP plummet so low that I was literally on the verge of passing out, and maybe I did. All I know is that was a horrific feeling I never want to experience again.

If you were in my situation what would you do.

1. Forget doing anything about slowing or stopping my periods with any artificial hormones or surgery, and just deal with the anemia until I get into Menopause. But who knows when that could be. Could be another 5 years, or even 10 years. My Hematologist says he will ensure me that what happened to me before will not happen again. I might only need IV Iron every 4-5 months, and just keep taking iron supplements in between

2. Take a chance again, and try estrogen only. Called the "mini-pill", and pray that helps, and I do not suffer any side effects. But then I have to switch Dr's because for some reason, my GYN will not prescribe it for me due to my age, HBP, and smoking, even though another Dr in that office said it was no problem. But the estrogen in the Mirena made me so darn tired. And the mini-pill may cause more problems as far as breakthrough bleeding. Not to mention my husband does not like the idea of artificial hormones, and neither do I.

3. Get an endometrial ablation. Take that chance that it will stop my periods, but if it does not work, he cannot repeat the procedure as the scar tissue would prevent that, and if the bleeding got worse, I would end up with a hysterectomy. I cannot do the Novasure, which is a type of endo ablation that has better results, less recovery, and can have a repeat procedure because my insurance will not pay for that.


In the end, how bad IS anemia? Do people die from this?

I am very bad at making decisions, and I cannot, for the life of me determine which is the lesser of two evils.

Let me say this.

1. I am asymptomatic for anemia as far as I know. Although Heme Dr. claimed that my anxiety and depression is caused by anemia, as well as my spotting and heavier periods. I am not tired or fatigued.

2. My periods are annoying. Yes. But nothing I cannot deal with. I go about my day, I can leave the house, I am not soaking through pads every 15 minutes. I spot before I get my period with cramping, which is annoying, but again I am so used to it, I just go about my business.

Someone also mentioned to me that maybe my heme Dr. is treating me overly aggessive. That candidates for IV Iron are reserved for people who cannot tolerate oral iron, have a malabsorption issues, or is experiencing very bad symptoms. None of which apply to me.
I have also been told that how does he know that my ferritin levels, and HGB and HCT levels are not the "norm" for ME??? My numbers have been off for the past 2-3 years at least.

And lastly, every woman seems to experience heavy bleeding at some point. Even to the point of soaking pads, yet I never hear of them saying they are anemic. What gives with that???

So, I need some logic, and input. I know nobody can MAKE this decision for me, but I would love to hear advice as to what you would do.

Thank you.
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Offline gridder

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Re: Menopause and Anemia
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2011, 05:03:44 PM »
Wow - I feel overwhelmed just reading this -- it really must feel overwhelming to you. Personally, I would do the least invasive things. It sounds to me like the fear of the IV thing is driving a lot of your decision. I am not sure what happened to you, since I have had low BP (after I gave birth) and it wasn't that big of a deal. Perhaps you had a panic attack when this happened?  But, if your doctor is fairly certain that he can control whatever reaction it was that you had, then I'd trust him.

It sounds to me like you are asymptomatic, yes? That the low iron thing just showed up on a test? I don't know. Maybe you should confirm that the IV treatment is the correct protocol for your age & levels.

And yes, it is common for women to get crazy bleeding before menopause. I have 1 heavy day where I can't really go to the gym, and have to change pads hourly. Some people I know have it worse -- so, it sounds like you are lucky in that regard.  Sorry I can't be of more help!
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Offline dancer67

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Re: Menopause and Anemia
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2011, 06:25:40 PM »
Quote
It sounds to me like you are asymptomatic, yes? That the low iron thing just showed up on a test? I don't know. Maybe you should confirm that the IV treatment is the correct protocol for your age & levels.


What happened was I had three rounds of bloodwork within a 6 month period. My WBC count was elevated in all of them, and my hemoglobin varied to okay, to low. And some other things were off, and nobody ever mentioned it to me. It was only when my husband had bloodwork done and we were there at the primary care Dr's getting his results, that I said to my Dr. "Hey, my bloodwork results aren'r perfect like his is???" and she said "No?? Let me look back at yours" so she did and said "Okay let's send you for another round of bloodwork"

It was then when my primary care mentioned I was slightly anemic and my WBC was still elevated, and was not sure if that was my normal WBC or not. She originally prescribed one iron pill a day. And she referred me to a hematologist.  It wasn't until I told her that I had an IV iron infusion. And hematologist said I had iron def anemia..

So no, I never complained of symptoms. They only found it because I mentioned that my bloodwork numbers were not perfect and all over the place.

I think I did/do have symptoms such as anxiety, depression, palpitations. But never would of linked that to anemia. But I go, go do, and I sleep about 9 hours a night. I don't need naps. I do not get short of breath, and I even danced last year.

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Offline dancer67

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Re: Menopause and Anemia
« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2011, 08:22:19 PM »
anyone??
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Offline dancer67

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Re: Menopause and Anemia
« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2011, 07:42:07 AM »
 :action-smiley-065:
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Offline Grandma

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Re: Menopause and Anemia
« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2011, 11:52:52 AM »
Hi dancer, and happy new year -

May I dare suggest that you try the decision chart method I suggested a while ago?

Love Grandma
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Offline crazygirl1

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Re: Menopause and Anemia
« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2011, 01:26:44 PM »
dancer, its all strange, because it doesnt seem like hteres really anything "wrong" but I dont understand why the hem dr doesnt say WHY he's treating you for iron def anemia when your #s arent crazy off...? what kind of dancing do you do? just wondering-any kind of dancing would really tire you out if there was anything really crazy off...
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Revelation 7:17
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Offline dancer67

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Re: Menopause and Anemia
« Reply #7 on: January 03, 2011, 02:48:06 PM »
Hi dancer, and happy new year -

May I dare suggest that you try the decision chart method I suggested a while ago?

Love Grandma

Hi Grandma :action-smiley-065:

Actually, that is what I did, and pretty much what I posted above.

I went and visited a Naturopath today. She thinks she can help me with my women issues and anemia so I am going to give it a try.

I am still having trouble wrapping my brain around this whole period=iron def anemia thing. The Naturpath suggeted maybe a Malabsorption issue. But other then my Vitamin D deficiency, and Iron issue, I do not have the symptoms from it.

My Vitamin B-12 is fine, my Folic Acid is fine. I am not losing weight that is for sure.

But, I have these things on the corner of my mouth, like sores. Looks like I am frowning sort of. I have had this now for about 3 years. Many people have mentioned that this is caused by a B deficiency. My Primary care noticed it as well last week, and she prescribed Folic Acid. And Riboflavin. Unfirtunately she couldn't get the Riboflavin as it didn't come in a small enough dose. So she said to keep taking my multivitamin. The Naturpath is getting me a multivitamin with more riboflavin in it. So, it bring me to the question of why have I had these things on the corners my lip for so long? I eat foods with Vitamin B in them. And my multivitamin had them as well. I would imagine it would have cleared up by now. Could be anemia related as well.     Could it be a malabsorption issue?

Hematologist says no.

Anyways, I am trying the Naturpath route for now. And doing accupuncture on Friday for anxiety.

Maybe what she gives me will work.

Somehow though, I just have this gut feeling that my anemia is being caused by something else, and not my periods at all. But I don't want to start digging around or asking questions for fear of MORE tests.

And I am STILL bleeding from the IUD removal a week ago. OMG, I don't think it is ever going to stop. It is making me soooo nervous.

 
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Offline dancer67

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Re: Menopause and Anemia
« Reply #8 on: January 03, 2011, 02:51:38 PM »
dancer, its all strange, because it doesnt seem like hteres really anything "wrong" but I dont understand why the hem dr doesnt say WHY he's treating you for iron def anemia when your #s arent crazy off...? what kind of dancing do you do? just wondering-any kind of dancing would really tire you out if there was anything really crazy off...

He is treating me because he is who I was referred to, and he feels that if my ferritin levels drop to low, my iron storage is going to deplete again, making my CBC numbers all off again. When your iron storage becomes low, it cannot deliver what it needs to you hemoglobin, and hematocrit. Then it is a snowball effect from there.

When I danced, I did hip hop and Jazz.

I was never tired. Fatugued. Etc.....

Yesterday I shopped and stripped wallpaper. I dunno :question:
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