Advice please!

Hi ladies I hope you are all as well as you can be :). I just need a bit of advice if possible? I was diagnosed with endometriosis in 2006 and have since had 6 operations, the last one being a subtotal hysterectomy including the removal of both ovaries in 2013. As a result of this I am taking Premarin 0.625mg as I am only 34. i recently went to see my GP as I have been experiencing light headedness, tingling in hands and feet and generally feeling unwell. He advised me to stop taking my HRT and started going on about the risk of stroke, heart disease etc. He said if I experience and adverse effects from not taking it I can go back and he will give me patches. This obviously scared me to death! I don't agree with not taking them, I know there are risks associated but surely there are also risks if I don't take them to my bones etc. My question is should I follow his advice or request a second opinion? Can I request to be referred to a gynae for a review of medication or does this have to be done by the GP? The doctor I used to see about my 'female problems' has left the practice and I'm not sure what to do!

Thanks in advance ladies :) x

4 Replies

  • Hi Hun. I had a full hysterectomy 8 years ago and I've been on the Evarol HRT patches since and had no problems and main health issue is the increase risk of breast cancer however this is more of a risk from 50 years old. I've not been told about a risk a stoke before. Hope this helps. Xx

  • That's what I thought! Thank you :) xx

  • Hi Jillian

    You are in the situation of there being risks on both sides - taking HRT has given you side effects and could stimulate endo even after a hysterectomy. The risk of breast cancer is much higher for combined HRT even after short term use but oestrogen only has been found to be much safer with the risk usually affecting those over 50 who have taken it for more than 10 years. So unless you have predisposing risk factors that risk should be very low. But not taking it can pose risks to bone and heart health as well as cognitive function. Endo is associated with allergy to our own hormones, including oestrogen, and that can give you those sorts of symptoms. It is all about what level of oestrogen is right for you - you don't need high levels to protect you and you should be regularly monitored. Has your GP done regular blood tests to check your levels? And breast exams?

    In terms of administering HRT, patches are considered far better as they don't involve the gastrointestinal tract and side effects should be reduced.

    Your instincts are right in that you do need some oestrogen for health benefits, but if your GP hasn't checked your levels then that is the first thing I suggest as without knowledge of your levels your GP really is working in the dark. It may be your levels are higher than needed and are triggering a reaction - the dose should be the minimum necessary. It is important to have this on your record so you have a reference point after going on patches (which I would recommend you try). You would then have ongoing regular blood tests (say every 6 months). I should discuss the patches with your GP and start with the lowest, monitor your symptoms then ask for a blood test after say 3 months to see where you are.

    At the moment there shouldn't be any concern about your bone health but if you did have concerns such as bone pain then your GP should send you for a DEXA bone density scan.

    As far as you know has you endo resolved after the hysterectomy? What was the situation after your last op and generally in all your endo history - where did you have it, did they tell you what stage it was and did you have it excised (completely removed) or ablated (burned away)? Have you had any endo symptoms since your op?


  • Hi lindle

    Thank you so much for this! My GP sent me for blood tests to check thyroid function but not my hormone levels. This was the first blood test I've had since having my operation as the GP that was monitoring me left not long after my op. I don't seem to have developed any symptoms since my hysterectomy as in I have no where near the amount of pain I used to suffer. I got rushed to A&E in 2006 with a suspected appendicitis and it turned out to be a 14cm chocolate cyst. I've had excision surgery since then and the cysts just kept returning so each surgery basically ate away at my ovaries until there was practically nothing left, hence the hysterectomy. As far as I'm aware there is no history of breast cancer in the family. I'm totally losing confidence in my GP I have an appointment on 10th April with a different doctor so I think I'll ask him about trying the patches. I may think about changing my practice. Thank you again for all of your advice and information I really appreciate it :) x

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