2

votes

Doc wants to put me on birth control for amenorrhea (no periods) ? Really?? Update**

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created May 30, 2011 at 5:06 PM

So I haven't had a period for about 18months. Over the past 2-3 years my cycle was going longer (say 45 days) eventually they stopped apart from a 4 month spell in 2009.

Test show low levels of LH and oestrogen. Everything else thyroid, adrenals seem in normal levels. I had an MRI on my pituitary and it didn't show up anything out of the ordinary.

The doc started me on the pill but it made me feel terrible so I stopped it (Jan - mid feb)

Overall I feel tired, moodiness (even depressed) and I am prone to the odd sugar binge. I started paleo in Jan and it has helped a little but still prone to sugar binges(damn it!)

So my hormones are out of whack but I just want to get them sorted without resorting to the pill, maybe it's my only option? I have been dabbling with acupuncture so perhaps that will help. Plus I think I need to dial my carbs down and go vlc or even zc to see if that helps.

** update saw doc for hormones blood tests and there are signs of them stirring! He was surprised!! Signs that my eostrodial(?) levels are coming back up, after levels so low last year. Not quite there yet but optimistic that periods could be coming. This is after some acupuncture sessions so you bet I will be glad to continue them to see if I can get a break through. Really chuffed, though doc was going to insist I go on the pill again. Fingers crossed this is going to resolve with acupuncture and good paleo living. :) Whaaaa, just feel so frustrated!

8c5533ffe71bd4262fedc7e898ead1ba

(1724)

on September 07, 2013
at 01:28 AM

You didn't say anything about how you exercise. Are you an endurance athlete? This is very common among young female endurance athletes and generally the easy prescription is a) dial back your distance/duration of workouts and b) more fat. Way more fat. And I agree with Andrew, try upping carbs (as in vegetables).

1bb4e49dcadf79ec668c7a86acc4b39c

(0)

on December 17, 2011
at 03:44 PM

FYI I'm not skinny boney person. And another thing was that I had tried for two years to lose weight thinking that was problem kept on a 2000 and under cal diet I kept to 1500 most of the time but had sugar days that messed me up but I never really lost weight in fact if I didn't calorie count and work out at least two times a week I would gain weight . I started to feel very absent minded after I had sugar but not tell 4 mo after this started I also felt very tired which I blamed on blood loss. So pay attention to how you feel after eating certain foods so you can tell your doctor.

Aa69579f867333b08158c70e25f7daf1

(1826)

on September 11, 2011
at 12:03 AM

Yes, the reason this place is so great is because you CAN post if you don't know what you're talking about and the community will help you out. Collaborative environments take all sorts of levels of knowledge, and we need to keep a positive, kind and respectful tone on here, please.

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on September 10, 2011
at 04:25 AM

Please don't post if you are going to tell other people not to post...

183f5c49a7a9548b6f5238d1f33cb35e

(1716)

on June 19, 2011
at 12:40 AM

Hiya! I have only been including starches for the last 2 week or so, just daily with no cycling. Maybe I will see how it goes first, the work out a cycling strategy soon. With regards to deciding the level of carbs - I used the CW method of using 'the size of your fist' - so a fist sized gob of starch at each meal, together with non starchy veg = about 100g of carbs per day.

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on June 18, 2011
at 01:20 PM

That's good news. Yeah I have going back and forth on what is the right level of carbs for me. I think I am starting to see that quality of carbs is important - sweet potato & tubers. No to fruits and White devil sugar!! Lol. My current thinking is to cycle carbs low carbs (green veg) on rest days and higher but not crazy carbs on workout days. That should be good for me. How did you decide the level of carbs to take? Do you cycle carbs? God bless the sweet potato!

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on June 18, 2011
at 01:15 PM

Hmm, honestly how low is your body fat? Are you really over trained? how long have you been paleo? These hormones are tricky devils. I am praying this acupuncture is helping but my hormones are showing signs of life after nada for a good 18 months. My acupuncturist has only had 1 women not respond and she was pregnant!! Good luck...

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on June 18, 2011
at 01:10 PM

Proceed with caution... It's almost like the doc was suggesting my uterus was going to "get stale" from not bleeding and my bones would break down. Of course at 34 I don't want to be storing up problems for years down the road. But I really don't want the pill either. My body fat was never that low!! But I did train hard on a low cal/carb diet with occasional sugar blowout. I think the secret is getting a good doctor who really understands this without blindly suggesting the pill. Keep tracking your blood / hormone levels. I am trying acupuncture and she has a good track record!

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on June 18, 2011
at 01:04 PM

Only 34, endochronologist suggested it wasn't early menopause.

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on June 18, 2011
at 01:03 PM

Good point about not just accepting blindly docs advice. He would have to have done a lot of arm twisting for the pill.

0bc6cbb653cdc5e82400f6da920f11eb

(19235)

on June 18, 2011
at 01:00 AM

What area of Edinburgh do you live in, if you don't mind me asking? I'm on the Southside around Newington.

559aa134ff5e6c8bcd608ba8dc505628

(3631)

on June 17, 2011
at 09:06 PM

yay @ update! hang in there! :)

510bdda8988ed0d4b0ec0b738b4edb73

(20898)

on June 17, 2011
at 08:50 PM

I know nothing about this topic, so I can't offer any real advice. But I just wanted to point out that you said "doc was going insist...". Even if the doc "insist", it's totally up to you what you do. Doctors like to thing they're the final say but you control your life. Always remember that.

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on June 17, 2011
at 08:41 PM

No not an endurance athlete but probably suffered from chronic cardio last year while train for mega mountain bike etc. Now much more into weights and hiit, intact the last two weeks I have been working on my sofa butt groove. Back to gym next week.

166f449979d83186bd876e8f466d0a69

(1317)

on May 31, 2011
at 04:56 AM

Haha patience is my greatest flaw too. After a couple of appointments I think "bah, this isn't working!"- and it's pricey too. But I guess also worth sorting out. The Rob Wolf testimonial is interesting, but it's from someone whose syndrome was caused by insulin resistance, which I haven't go. A lot of people get on the drug Metformin because it helps with their insulin sensitivity but it wouldn't help me. Paleo likewise hasn't really helped although I do notice that my sugar cravings lessen when I eat more fat, less carbs.... hmm... Apparently not so good for liver stagnation though! Argh!

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on May 31, 2011
at 04:24 AM

Thanks. Will see if I can get a scan for that,I have dabbled in acupuncture before and I think I have found a good one. She used to be endochronologist! But she said I had to be patient(my greatest flaw! Lol) have you seen latest testimonial on robbs site on pcos http://robbwolf.com/2011/05/30/real-life-testimonial-paleo-for-pcos-infertility/.

B1fcaceba952861d0324bdb291edbbe0

(3159)

on May 31, 2011
at 03:29 AM

I'd go to a naturopath or oriental medicine practitioner (as mentioned below).

Medium avatar

(4878)

on May 30, 2011
at 08:18 PM

And please make sure the practitioner is LICENSED and has +5 years of experience. Unfortunately the real learning comes after passing their boards and through working with an experienced practitioner.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on May 30, 2011
at 07:18 PM

you should get on the phone call zrtlabs.com and see if they would do testing for you in the UK. Maybe they have a sister company over there who does?

D10ca8d11301c2f4993ac2279ce4b930

(5242)

on May 30, 2011
at 07:02 PM

You may play with upping the carbs and seeing what it does to your hormonal balance. Low carb can aggravate cortisol and other stress hormones.

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on May 30, 2011
at 06:59 PM

Sleep is good. Much improved since new year. Will see about low carb, it's helped big time with cravings.

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on May 30, 2011
at 06:57 PM

Have been low carb(even before paleo) for a while and it's been good. When I start on the sugar it's bad news and it's tough pushing back the cravings. Low carb suits me better - so paleo was a good fit when I read Robbs book at new year.

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on May 30, 2011
at 06:54 PM

Edinburgh, United kingdom. Yep, all the way over the water. A tad inconvenient! Always open to using skype etc and could try to source private blood test?! Our National Health Service has some benefits but sometimes thinking outside the box ain't one of them.

D10ca8d11301c2f4993ac2279ce4b930

(5242)

on May 30, 2011
at 06:46 PM

Functional medicine doctor should have some good advice and are trained hormone balancing. I wouldn't advise low carb as a fix for this. TS Wiley has a couple books that will may help. Make sure you're getting 8+ hours of sleep.

06d21b99c58283ce575e36c4ecd4a458

(9948)

on May 30, 2011
at 06:27 PM

The Quilt is in Hermitage, Tn

06d21b99c58283ce575e36c4ecd4a458

(9948)

on May 30, 2011
at 06:26 PM

Blood letting is back? Minnie, look at this listing of low carb docs by state. http://lowcarbdoctors.blogspot.com/

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on May 30, 2011
at 06:16 PM

where do you live?

D10ca8d11301c2f4993ac2279ce4b930

(5242)

on May 30, 2011
at 06:02 PM

Minnie, are you low carb?

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on May 30, 2011
at 05:39 PM

Creams?! Will defo look into that.

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on May 30, 2011
at 05:35 PM

Agreed! Doc seems hooked on fact I need to bleed to keep my womb fresh. Low oestrogen, ahhhh, just pop the pill. I realise my hormones have probably been whacky for quite sometime and this is somehow interlinked with low moods, sugary carbs etc. Interesting about cortisol, tests show adrenals are ok but there has got to be something going on. Now to find a good doctor?! Hmmmm

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on May 30, 2011
at 05:23 PM

I bet your cortisol is through the roof.....CRH inhibits GNRH and TSH. That explains your stalls and your period issues. Go see a doc who does not have their head firmly planted up their ass.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on May 30, 2011
at 05:21 PM

You need to find out from a doctor.......WHY forget about how and what.......This is total BS advice.

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11 Answers

3
Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on May 30, 2011
at 05:20 PM

Run the other way........you need to to run. Horrible advice.

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on May 30, 2011
at 05:35 PM

Agreed! Doc seems hooked on fact I need to bleed to keep my womb fresh. Low oestrogen, ahhhh, just pop the pill. I realise my hormones have probably been whacky for quite sometime and this is somehow interlinked with low moods, sugary carbs etc. Interesting about cortisol, tests show adrenals are ok but there has got to be something going on. Now to find a good doctor?! Hmmmm

06d21b99c58283ce575e36c4ecd4a458

(9948)

on May 30, 2011
at 06:27 PM

The Quilt is in Hermitage, Tn

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on May 30, 2011
at 06:59 PM

Sleep is good. Much improved since new year. Will see about low carb, it's helped big time with cravings.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on May 30, 2011
at 05:21 PM

You need to find out from a doctor.......WHY forget about how and what.......This is total BS advice.

D10ca8d11301c2f4993ac2279ce4b930

(5242)

on May 30, 2011
at 06:46 PM

Functional medicine doctor should have some good advice and are trained hormone balancing. I wouldn't advise low carb as a fix for this. TS Wiley has a couple books that will may help. Make sure you're getting 8+ hours of sleep.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on May 30, 2011
at 05:23 PM

I bet your cortisol is through the roof.....CRH inhibits GNRH and TSH. That explains your stalls and your period issues. Go see a doc who does not have their head firmly planted up their ass.

06d21b99c58283ce575e36c4ecd4a458

(9948)

on May 30, 2011
at 06:26 PM

Blood letting is back? Minnie, look at this listing of low carb docs by state. http://lowcarbdoctors.blogspot.com/

2
Medium avatar

(4878)

on May 30, 2011
at 05:54 PM

I'd go to a Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioner with a specialty in fertility. Usually the top fertility MDs in your area will know who is well trained in fertility as IVF has great results when TCM is used. I'd call around in your area, if you want a referral.

It may cost you $65-80 depending upon your town's cost of living, or you can go to a teaching college lower the cost to $15-25.

Medium avatar

(4878)

on May 30, 2011
at 08:18 PM

And please make sure the practitioner is LICENSED and has +5 years of experience. Unfortunately the real learning comes after passing their boards and through working with an experienced practitioner.

1
183f5c49a7a9548b6f5238d1f33cb35e

on June 18, 2011
at 07:05 AM

Eat some starch - my period also went AWOL after being very low carb for about 6 months. Lots of panic, stress and pregnancy testing ensued. Then I introduced starches again and got my period back after just one week of eating about 100g carbs from sweet potatoes and such! Anybody know the biochemistry behind this?

Now, I still have a thick pad of fat around my midsection, but I won't be lowering carbs drastically in the future to get rid of it, as I don't want to go through the period loss again. Might have to go back to the old method of reducing food amount and moving more to get leaner :( and learning how to relax better - I am a worrier and a suspect the fat is cortisol related.

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on June 18, 2011
at 01:20 PM

That's good news. Yeah I have going back and forth on what is the right level of carbs for me. I think I am starting to see that quality of carbs is important - sweet potato & tubers. No to fruits and White devil sugar!! Lol. My current thinking is to cycle carbs low carbs (green veg) on rest days and higher but not crazy carbs on workout days. That should be good for me. How did you decide the level of carbs to take? Do you cycle carbs? God bless the sweet potato!

183f5c49a7a9548b6f5238d1f33cb35e

(1716)

on June 19, 2011
at 12:40 AM

Hiya! I have only been including starches for the last 2 week or so, just daily with no cycling. Maybe I will see how it goes first, the work out a cycling strategy soon. With regards to deciding the level of carbs - I used the CW method of using 'the size of your fist' - so a fist sized gob of starch at each meal, together with non starchy veg = about 100g of carbs per day.

1
559aa134ff5e6c8bcd608ba8dc505628

(3631)

on May 30, 2011
at 06:58 PM

oh god, don't take The Pill!!!

You have to figure out how to get your body to work properly on it's own (easier said than done, i know). Flooding your system with synthetic hormones is not going to equalize you or teach your bod how to self-regulate. In fact it'll probably teach it to act in a compensatory way. Science doesn't, and can't really ever, know ALL of the effects and mechanisms of hormones in our bodies. Taking the pill will probably indeed give you very regular periods, but at what cost?

I have never, ever, met someone who has been totally problem-free with the pill. I'm willing to allow that maybe just don't hear about the successes, but still..

Stick with the acupuncture, and keep on the path you're on of properly nourishing yourself. Good luck!

0
1bb4e49dcadf79ec668c7a86acc4b39c

on December 17, 2011
at 03:24 PM

Look into pcos I had same problems, mine was caused by insulin resistance I am not a dibetic I am not obese I am 34, I've eaten whole wheat bread all my life, I love sweets would cave cravings, I don't have them anymore they have me a pill that helps me break down the insulin,I've also lost weight hope this helps I know how I felt.

1bb4e49dcadf79ec668c7a86acc4b39c

(0)

on December 17, 2011
at 03:44 PM

FYI I'm not skinny boney person. And another thing was that I had tried for two years to lose weight thinking that was problem kept on a 2000 and under cal diet I kept to 1500 most of the time but had sugar days that messed me up but I never really lost weight in fact if I didn't calorie count and work out at least two times a week I would gain weight . I started to feel very absent minded after I had sugar but not tell 4 mo after this started I also felt very tired which I blamed on blood loss. So pay attention to how you feel after eating certain foods so you can tell your doctor.

0
8cbb06eb84dad8d2db56fcc4d8bdc0ba

on June 18, 2011
at 03:49 AM

Just got the exact same diagnosis and recommended therapy from my gyno - no period for the last 12 mo. everything tested normal, thyroid, not premenopausal, doc agreed with me its due to training intensity and low body fat. She said that low estrogen will cause bone loss and recommended birth control pills! It did not make any sense to me!

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on June 18, 2011
at 01:15 PM

Hmm, honestly how low is your body fat? Are you really over trained? how long have you been paleo? These hormones are tricky devils. I am praying this acupuncture is helping but my hormones are showing signs of life after nada for a good 18 months. My acupuncturist has only had 1 women not respond and she was pregnant!! Good luck...

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on June 18, 2011
at 01:10 PM

Proceed with caution... It's almost like the doc was suggesting my uterus was going to "get stale" from not bleeding and my bones would break down. Of course at 34 I don't want to be storing up problems for years down the road. But I really don't want the pill either. My body fat was never that low!! But I did train hard on a low cal/carb diet with occasional sugar blowout. I think the secret is getting a good doctor who really understands this without blindly suggesting the pill. Keep tracking your blood / hormone levels. I am trying acupuncture and she has a good track record!

0
78f4a1b90814931891179fca3b987292

on June 18, 2011
at 02:45 AM

How old are you? Very hard to give advice without knowing if you might be menopausal.

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on June 18, 2011
at 01:04 PM

Only 34, endochronologist suggested it wasn't early menopause.

0
166f449979d83186bd876e8f466d0a69

(1317)

on May 31, 2011
at 02:49 AM

I had no period for three years between the ages of 14-17 (in the UK too) and the doctor put me on the pill. Not knowing any better, I stayed on it for 6 years, until I quit it in January 2010. My period didn't come back. I now live in Japan, but went back to the UK in December and saw a doctor- he said that after quitting the pill your cycle can be "odd" for up to 1.5 years (despite the fact mine wasn't odd, it was entirely absent) and that he wouldn't run any tests for me until I reached that point. So I came back to Japan, saw a doctor here three weeks ago and she discovered I have polycystic ovaries. Not sure if I have full blown PCOS (the syndrome), and I hear that both can be mutually exclusive (eg you can have the syndrome without the cysts and have the cysts without the syndrome). I'm furious at the English doctors for not even checking for this when I was 17, or in December. The Japanese doctor gave me the pill just to make me bleed. Although I empathise with you that your doctor just wants you to have a "fresh womb" (ha!) it is important to shed the lining every now and then- and it's been a year and a half for me now!

I would get checked out for PCOS if possible. If you find that low carb helps you that may be tied into a symptom that often comes in tandem with PCOS- insulin resistance. I have always been skinny so I don't seem to have the weight gain problem some people have with it.

However, after getting distraught about it and worried that I would have to stay on the pill to regulate my hormones, I saw a great acupuncturist who I have been to for other problems. He diagnosed me with stagnant liver qi, which explains a few other health problems, and has been treating me for that. I have heard great things about acupuncture's ability to solve hormonal imbalances, so I highly recommend it. It's been a while since I've been back in the UK but I think that you can get acupuncture on the NHS for some things. Otherwise have a look at reviews for acupuncturists in Edinburgh.

Good luck!

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on May 31, 2011
at 04:24 AM

Thanks. Will see if I can get a scan for that,I have dabbled in acupuncture before and I think I have found a good one. She used to be endochronologist! But she said I had to be patient(my greatest flaw! Lol) have you seen latest testimonial on robbs site on pcos http://robbwolf.com/2011/05/30/real-life-testimonial-paleo-for-pcos-infertility/.

166f449979d83186bd876e8f466d0a69

(1317)

on May 31, 2011
at 04:56 AM

Haha patience is my greatest flaw too. After a couple of appointments I think "bah, this isn't working!"- and it's pricey too. But I guess also worth sorting out. The Rob Wolf testimonial is interesting, but it's from someone whose syndrome was caused by insulin resistance, which I haven't go. A lot of people get on the drug Metformin because it helps with their insulin sensitivity but it wouldn't help me. Paleo likewise hasn't really helped although I do notice that my sugar cravings lessen when I eat more fat, less carbs.... hmm... Apparently not so good for liver stagnation though! Argh!

0
166f449979d83186bd876e8f466d0a69

(1317)

on May 31, 2011
at 02:47 AM

I had no period for three years between the ages of 14-17 (in the UK too) and the doctor put me on the pill. Not knowing any better, I stayed on it for 6 years, until I quit it in January 2010. My period didn't come back. I now live in Japan, but went back to the UK in December and saw a doctor- he said that after quitting the pill your cycle can be "odd" for up to 1.5 years (despite the fact mine wasn't odd, it was entirely absent) and that he wouldn't run any tests for me until I reached that point. So I came back to Japan, saw a doctor here three weeks ago and she discovered I have polycystic ovaries. Not sure if I have full blown PCOS (the syndrome), and I hear that both can be mutually exclusive (eg you can have the syndrome without the cysts and have the cysts without the syndrome). I'm furious at the English doctors for not even checking for this when I was 17, or in December. The Japanese doctor gave me the pill just to make me bleed. Although I empathise with you that your doctor just wants you to have a "fresh womb" (ha!) it is important to shed the lining every now and then- and it's been a year and a half for me now!

I would get checked out for PCOS if possible. If you find that low carb helps you that may be tied into a symptom that often comes in tandem with PCOS- insulin resistance. I have always been skinny so I don't seem to have the weight gain problem some people have with it.

However, after getting distraught about it and worried that I would have to stay on the pill to regulate my hormones, I saw a great acupuncturist who I have been to for other problems. He diagnosed me with stagnant liver qi, which explains a few other health problems, and has been treating me for that. I have heard great things about acupuncture's ability to solve hormonal imbalances, so I highly recommend it. It's been a while since I've been back in the UK but I think that you can get acupuncture on the NHS for some things. Otherwise have a look at reviews for acupuncturists in Edinburgh.

Good luck!

-1
8b42eaa8cc2f04249ed2f60d3eccc98e

on September 10, 2011
at 03:43 AM

Please don't post if you don't know what you are talking about. Have you ever heard of osteoporosis? It is most common after menopause because your estrogen levels have declined. So low estrogen can cause bone loss and cause you to not have a cycle. In your situation, having low body fat or intense exercise regimens can affect your estrogen levels, thus lead to lack of menses. The treatment is training less, eating more healthy fat, and changing your ratio of muscle to fat And see if your cycle resumes or start birth control. Just because you reacted bad to one doesn't mean the same thing will happen. Also keep in mind that woman that don't have menstrual cycles that are also athletes are at higher risk of stress fractures...and women do not need to have cycles for the reasons mentioned ( they have continuous birth control now that skips monthly bleeding altogether.)... The lack of regular menses is a sign your body is stressed. It's a defense mechanism in which the body tries to prevent pregnancy because the body is overworked, or too thin, or stressed etc ( considering all other test are normal).

Aa69579f867333b08158c70e25f7daf1

(1826)

on September 11, 2011
at 12:03 AM

Yes, the reason this place is so great is because you CAN post if you don't know what you're talking about and the community will help you out. Collaborative environments take all sorts of levels of knowledge, and we need to keep a positive, kind and respectful tone on here, please.

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on September 10, 2011
at 04:25 AM

Please don't post if you are going to tell other people not to post...

-1
35b6ce9b7f9dda8d40d3e6a1812ab0a9

on May 30, 2011
at 05:27 PM

BCP's are a bunch of bologne. I wish I had known in my 20's what I know in my 30's! there are estrogen and other reproductive hormone creams you can buy that rub onto your skin. I don't know that much about them but from what I've heard from a couple friends they are much better than pills. I have no idea how to find a good Naturopath, but google will probably tell you. a Naturopath will figure out how to solve your problem without BCP's. Wish I knew more!!

560821f3e7352455c3ebc2283d424f2e

on May 30, 2011
at 05:39 PM

Creams?! Will defo look into that.

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