Does HRT Affect Hypothyroidism? Having raging r... - Thyroid UK

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Does HRT Affect Hypothyroidism? Having raging regular hot sweats for two weeks?

Hi! I have hypo, probably Hashi's and 49 (around menopausal age). Over two weeks now I've started having raging hot sweats morning, noon and night which is making me feel quite unwell and wakes me up numerous times a night. I cannot pinpoint this to menopausal flush symptoms or something else. Previously to these sweats I was prescribed Doxycycline for a sinus and ear infection but have been off that for a week now so I don't think that could be a link. I know I am starting the change as I have only had 1 period in nearly a year but haven't had these raging hot sweats every 15 minutes before. I know if I go back to the GP, they will say it is menopausal and recommend HRT.

I wanted to avoid HRT if at all possible but would value anyone's thoughts and experiences of anyone who is on HRT with hypo or Hashi's. I have been managing my thyroid levels quite well with Thyroid S for a while and desperate not to mess this up. If these hot sweats are the menopause, I don't think I can just ride them out for years considering the regularity and severity. I am already driving my husband and kids up the wall with the heating being turned right down and the windows wide open. Any advice would be gladly received.

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Gosh been racking my brains to remember those days! My menopause was strange and I think wrongly diagnosed! I can remember going to the doctors and asking if I could increase my thyroid meds as I was going downhill so she agreed-no questions or testing but as I got to the door I turned and said that my periods had stopped so I was told to come in as sit down and was prescribed HRT! Again no questions asked. It wason the early side but my gran had brought me up after my mum died when I was 5 and shared her menopause symptoms and she has a very early experience. Mid thirties I think it was so mid forty didn't make me question it.

So 10 years on HRT when I directive went out to stop after 10 years which I did. By now my thyroid was suffering and I decided to go back to the doctor who had first put me on thyroid meds who was now in private practice. He decided that I should go back to taking my basal temperature and let's see what that tells us after three months. After that time it was obvious that I was still ovulating but in the phase of no periods but still take precautions as I could still get pregnant! So my 'menopause' was incorrect! Doctor had jumped the gun and I'd wrongly been taking HRT forcaeoubf 10 years! So my periods had stopped for another reason-wrong Thyroid levels seemed to be the culprit!

So my post is t to tell you what to do with HRT or not but to advise to check your thyroid meds to make sure they are correct. Could the flushes be down to being over medicated? From my experience best to rule that out first.

Also looking back once I was more knowledgeable about thyroid issues and symptoms and thinking about my gran I suspect she had a thyroid issue not picked up. The usual slim woman had a paunch andhad been treated for PA from being a young girl when she had to eat raw liver before medication was available. So may be her early menopause wasn't either! She actually looked after me from when I came out of hospital at three weeks and my mum when she was clear from TB though the damage it had done shorted he life. She was 62 when I was born so any tiredness was understandable!

So check on what you do know first to make sure other factors aren't responsible.

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Many thanks for your story, it just seems all very sudden for my meds to be wrong now, but will check out.

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Hi MapleMoose, I had hashimoto's and menopause turn up just about the same time - deep joy! I was about 42, so they told me I had an early menopause. We actually couldn't work out which symptoms were menopause and which were the hashimoto's so they prescribed me levothyroxine first to see what effect that had. I think I went on like that for another few years and it was really miserable, so I made the decision to go on HRT patches. My quality of life was rotten, my body was going through a hot - cold cycle every 15 minutes, I would get really really hot then really really freezing. I made the decision that quality of life now was more important to me. So it took me a wee while for my body to settle down but eventually it did. I use a transdermal HRT patch which needs changed once a week. It made such a difference. Later on, I had other thyroid symptoms so am now on liothyronine too and have been feeling a lot better. I am 49 and have been on HRT patches for 4 years. I am intending soon to come off them though as increased sex hormones has always given me lumpy breast tissue, also when on contraception. The other thing to note that even transdermal patches (which they say shouldn't affect thyroid hormone absorption) did put my TSH up a wee bit. Ultimately whatever you do is your decision. I do know that taking HRT is just delaying all the menopausal symptoms but my belief had been to get myself in a better place first before I tried to go through that again. A good thing to do would be to get your sex hormones tested, I believe that can be done through a saliva test, and then take appropriate action. Good luck x

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Many thanks for your thoughts. I am feeling quite yucky with them so want to try and get to the route of it.

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I feel your pain! I am going demented. 20 years hypo thyroid. Hysterectomy aged 30 , one ovary remaining. I have horrendous symptoms at the moment. It’s like my thermostat has broken. Hot -cold- hot -cold all day. I have low body temp, slow pulse and low bp. Bloods are showing in range. I am seeing endocrinologist tonight to work out what’s going on with me, before I end up in prison for murder or hospital with breakdown ! I have always thought I’d avoid HRT and do the natural route but the way I feel at the moment “ JUST GIVE ME THE DRUGS !!! “

I’ll let you know the outcome if it’s useful.

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What doctors deem normal probably isn’t. Sounds like all the symptoms of under medication to me. Try the lady magnet I’ve posted about. HRT only delays the symptoms so in other words if you take them till your 70 you have the nasty symptoms then. No thanks

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I have a lady care magnet. It helped initially but now seems to have stopped. There are lots of other symptoms that it’s not helping with. I know HRT just delays the inevitable but I’m alive and unwell now. I think if I reach my 70’s it will be a blessing and I’ll take my chances. Lol. I have terrible trouble with GPs and managing my thyroid. I don’t even consult them anymore. I go straight to specialist. I’m on T3 and T4. Thank you for your reply x have a good day x

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Sorry to but in on your reply, but I too have issues with GPs and are now self medicating. I don't have a specialist either not that would help in my area as they don't believe in testing for T3. This site has been a godsend to me to take the plunge in taking my health into my own control where possible. Best wishes to you!!

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I'm sorry but you are wrong about HRT delaying the symptoms. It does not do that. If you take HRT for 5 years and wean off to find you still have symptoms then you would still be having symptoms anyway without having had the HRT. Some women never stop having symptoms. Others are through and back to a new normal very quickly.

So much incorrect information around about HRT sadly. The web site menopausedoctor.co.uk is fantastic for correct and up to date information based on NHS NICE guidelines etc. Dr Newson, who the site belongs too, explains about your assumption of HRT delaying things in one of her videos. HRT can reverse osteoporosis and protect against heart disease and new evidence is starting to gather that it's protective against dementia. So many good reasons to take HRT, especially the newer transdermal types.

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Well that just goes to prove that you shouldn’t believe all you read. If my magnet fails to work at any stage I’ll look at HRT

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There's another excellent menopause specialist who has a vlog on YouTube. She talks about the benefits and different types of HRT and when to use it. I'll put a link below to her vlog. Lots of interesting talks there, including about hypo and hyper. She's especially interesting on the subject of hypo because she lost her thyroid to cancer and is using both T4 and T3 treatment.

youtube.com/channel/UCylT2V...

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I have read about the lady magnet sounds great but doesn't give any actual benefits to the body like hrt. I've found transdermal estrodial and micronised progesterone hrt to be fantastic. Apart from no more hot and cold sweats my skin is glowing my hair is lush and nails are strong, my bones and joints are no longer aching and I even sleep well at night. I'm 54 and been on hrt 5 years. I feel ten years younger on it. I'm not looking to stop, it's the best I've ever felt.

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Tell me about it! Last week, I spent 10 minutes with my head in the deep freeze at Sainsburys messing with the frozen veg trying to cool down until an assistant asked what I was looking for :)

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I had an early menopause and had hot flushes ( the only symptom I had really.) I didn’t want to take HRT so did some research and came up with high dose sage (2000 mg daily) and it worked a treat. Within a weeek the flushes were dramatically reduced and by a month they were gone apart from the odd one every now and again.

Clemmie

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Wow this sounds interesting. I want to avoid HRT if necessary. Did it affect your thyroid levels?

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No, it never affected my thyroid levels.

Clemmie

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I've been reading stuff from A Vogel about menopause and they recommend sage too, as well as soy isoflavones. Less keen on the soy but interesting about the sage. Can you tell us what brand you are taking please?

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I bought it from Healthspan online as they seemed to be the only place to get the high dose. They do 2000 mg , 120 once a day tablets for £10.99. I recommended it to several friends and it seemed to work for them too.

Clemmie

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Does the sage give you side effects?

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None, whatsoever!

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Looks like that needs to be on my next shopping list 🙂

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All post menopausal women need at least 300mg of Magnesium a day, but the sooner you start, the better you'll feel. Magnesium and p5p certainly calms down sleep disturbances and apparently may help reduce night sweats.. Black cohosh is the new herb on the block for night sweats... never tried it. The herb may have some adaptogenic effect and as night sweats start in a confused hypothalamus, it could be worth a try, but check for interactions as I personally cannot vouch for it.

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Thank you for the information. I have been taking magnesium but not sure if enough so will check. Thanks!

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Black cohosh isn't new! I was taking it 15 years ago. Different herbal remedies work for different hormonal imbalances. There used to a website called something Find your menopause type. You filled in a questionnaire and it put you into one of about 7 categories and recommended supplements. The you have a look at the ingredients of the ones they recommend and go and buy your own (unless you are in the US). None of them worked for me but agnus castus was the most successful.

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I'm 49 so does this still apply? I don't want to overdose which gives it's own complications.

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If you are taking less than 300mg then you're far more likely to be deficient which can cause heart issues, blood sugar problems, poor absorption of vitamin d and weak bones. The benefits of a quality Magnesium supplement outweigh the risk... which is basically loose bowel movements. Magnesium Oxide is bin worthy it is so useless. Mag Citrate and Glycinate are good.Transdermal Magnesium is good for topping up if you have muscular aches and pains. Take away from thyroid meds, but you can build up levels by taking in smaller separate doses and should not effect bowels then.

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Appreciate your advice.

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Try ladymagnet £35 from boots. Never had a hot flush since. Wonderful invention all though my periods are regular I’m guessing at 50 I’m peri menopausal

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Thanks, that's worth a try although pricey. My hubby already thinks I spend too much on meds and supplements. It's alright for them, they don't have to go through this crap :)

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I delayed for a while but now reckon it’s the best £35 I’ve ever spent. Funny how we are reluctant to spend on ourselves

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Mine didn't cost anything like that (but I got it online years ago). Possibly worked a bit for a while, but not really, and sometimes makes your knickers fall down if you are wearing a skirt! Worth a try if you can get it more cheaply.

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Hi,

I’m on hrt and I’m hypo plus I’ve just had surgery to remove ovarian cysts, tubes and ovaries. If anything I’ve found my required amount of levothyroxine has actually gone down not up, but this could be to do with stopping other medications and the fact the ovarian issues have mostly gone.

I do still get hot flushes but so far are no where near as bad as before hrt and mine have a definite link to either eating sugar or milk. Have you looked at a food link? Mine are definitely worse in the evening than any other time of the day.

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Hi, mine are all day and night and came on very suddenly during a bout of antibiotics for sinus infection but haven't left after finishing :/

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Just a thought. I never had hot flushes till I was 60 so menapause not to blame.....for me it turned out to be very low vitamin d. Levels and after high dose supplements they just went however they returned when levels dropped again a year later.

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Mmm, that's interesting, will up my dose and see. Willing to try anything, thanks!!

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My suggestions - see a good nutritional therapist or naturopath, whereabouts do you live? HRT can damage your health. The menopause is a natural stage in life, there are many ways of helping it to run smoother. Vitamins and minerals and everything in the body need to be in balance, the liver especially.

A conventional doctor only has hrt in their toolbox. Research hrt if you want to take it, I doubt you will not be afraid.

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Thanks! I know, I want to avoid HRT wherever possible. I have been given several natural suggestions so will look into those. Went to see a nutritionist before, about my thyroid, but they gave me conflicting advice at a very high price so doing the research myself.

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Hi, I wrote a post quite recently about this as I have just started the menopause at age 44. My mum was 42 and grandma was 32, so I was expecting it to be early-ish. I have been hypo for 25+ years and was having the most horrific hot flushes like you, every 15-30 minutes, and it was stopping me from sleeping. I was utterly exhausted. I went to the GP about it, even though I don't generally trust them to know what's best for me. Anyway, as a result I am currently trying HRT in the form of transdermal patches. 2 weeks in and the flushes have completely gone and I am actually sleeping again. I did some research and found there is a risk of needing to increase my thyroid medication, but to be honest, my quality of life was so horrendous with the flushes, it's a risk I am willing to take at the moment.

I had lots of suggestions from the lovely people on this forum of things to try, so you may want to have a look at this too. In the end I decided to start on the HRT because I get free prescriptions and money is tight, but if it doesn't work out for me longer term I will look into some of the other suggestions instead like the serenity cream.

healthunlocked.com/thyroidu...

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Thank you for posting your story. I need something. I may try the high dose sage and increase my magnesium and vit D to try first. All the best with your HRT :)

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Good luck to you too, and hope you find something that works for you

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Hi there.

I had a hysterectomy at aged 35 for fibroids - ovaries left intact - after suffering for two years I was put on HRT and it changed my life - for the first time I felt so well and full of energy something I had never felt before - now knowing I had a low thyroid/adrenals all my life since childhood hence the anaemia and other issues. Got to 50 - when the menopause started and things started to go wrong - thyroid issues - what I didn't know at that time was the HRT (oestrogen only because of hysterectomy) was blocking the thyroid hormone needed - but also at the menopause as the oestrogen drops the adrenal glands have to pick up the slack to supply the female with oestrogen - and because I had had thyroid dysfunction for many years without knowing it - but more importantly the adrenals were exhausted because they had had to supply my energy rather than the metabolic system - I had a bad time - I wont go into detail other than to say that my body tried desperately to keep the thyroid and adrenals going - grabbing Vitamin C - zinc - magnesium - etc. etc. to the point where I was told when tested for same that I had malnutrition - this was incredulous to me as I had a fabulous diet and took supplements all my life - good job said the consultant otherwise you would not be here now.

mariongluckclinic.com/blog/...

Before the hysterectomy I had always felt so fantastic when pregnant and when I was on the pill with both oestrogen and progesterone - so on researching this subject in depth for years it would appear the adrenals are heavily involved in supplying oestrogen progesterone testosterone and aldosterone etc. etc. - I had the same issues when I went on thyroid hormone I was sweating profusely it was awful - and nothing to do with the menopause as such because I had had a hysterectomy but what I was suffering from was adrenal sex gland loss i.e. oestrogen imbalance. Mine only stopped when I was put on a steroid to support the adrenals when the thyroid asked them to support the uptake. But I am not a Dr and would not recommend this route as I am now officially diagnosed as Adrenal Insufficiency type II. I totally agree with someone who has said on here and that is if you can get your sex hormones tested - oestrogen progesterone and tesosterone you can see what is happening and yes Magnesium is important too.

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I go to Marion Gluck clinic - pricey, but very good. So good that I travel 4 hours each way to get there.

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Hi - that's good to know because I have heard both good and bad about the clinic - but will go with someone like yourself who has actually been helped. I have to go to Belgium so might try London instead now that they have caught up.

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They are not as good now as they were when I first went in about 2010, but I think that is because they have grown so much. You might not be able to go to Belgium easily any more in a couple of months ... There are other bioidentical hormone clinics in London and one in Reading or Bedford or somewhere like that - just do a web search

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Hi there - Belgium won't be a problem - my hubby will be working over there shortly and he doesn't envisage any issues. I have just worked out MG's clinic prices and it is still cheaper to go to Belgium believe it or not.

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Many thanks! Wow, you've certainly gone through it. My GPs aren't good enough to test all that so will have to look into that privately... Such expense but if the other natural stuff doesn't work will have to go for it.

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I have been ill for over 25 years with Lupus which was really thyroid related and no-one at that time looked into hormonal systems like they do today - if I told you it has cost me the value of a house (and we were not rich) I wouldn't be exaggerating and they still are not up to speed within the NHS. It is so sad.

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Absolutely! Very difficult indeed when the cash doesn't freely flow :( Wish I could spend my money on interesting things like holidays rather than keeping myself alive :)

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It is tragic but we just keep putting up with it - wish we all had the energy to march on the streets to bring the matter to the attention of those who don't care.

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I take bioidentical HRT, but I don't have Hashis (central hypo). My symptoms were so bad I think I'd have killed myself without the HRT. I stuck it out for 7 years (and symptoms did not get better). Need to take it 4 hours away from levo or T3. You can also get hot sweats from over or under medication.

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Perhaps that's a crucial point - anyone with central hypo already has impaired feedback mechanisms in the hypothalamus, which explains why menopause is particularly bad for those with central hypo??

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Thanks for your thoughts and all the best on your journey too. Tried increasing my dose but felt restless. Was doing well on my current level for ages.

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Thanks, that's worth looking into.

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and also look at Dr Alyssa Burns-Hill website too

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Appreciate it :)

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Angel of the North makes a good point. You say you are 'probably' Hashi's, is this confirmed with antibody tests? Healthy adrenal function will help enormously... my tip is to regularly drink glasses of water with a pinch of sea salt and vitamin c.

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Yes, my antibodies were sky high and my GP stated my thyroid issue was probably auto immune related but didn't actually diagnose Hasi. I have adrenal support supplements in my cupboard perhaps I need to dig them out. I take vitamin C and increased my zinc lately to between 30 - 40mg a day.

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Just had a brainwave. You may have candida overgrowth due to the antibiotics for your sinus infection? Candida can worsen hot flashes. Treat the candida! Goldenseal is good.

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Good to know! I have taken Berberine for that so make take that

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In the UK, it's called autoimmune thyroid disease, not Hashis.

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I'm hypo,menopausal from hysterectomy and I take Estrogen pills....my internal thermostat has never been right over the years.

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Hi, MapleMoose (love your sceen name!): I am a 70-year-old woman and had hot flashes and night sweats for years and years and years...I would still have them today, I'm sure, if my doctor hadn't let me take HRT. I am hypo...HRT doesn't appear to bother my med for it, though. I take my HRT around 3:00 or 4:00 in the afternoon and my thyroid med at 7:00 in the morning. HRT will help keep your bones good, too. I won't take those awful, deadly bone meds they have! I believe they should all be taken off the market and that all people should refuse to take them to help that process. You'll feel better on HRT, believe me, and your husband and kids will probably be happier, too.

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Many thanks! Did you get thumping headaches and sensations of fluttering as well? My head is soaring to the point where I have to take Ibrufen. I am wondering whether it could be high blood pressure related. My mum is 80 and never had a single symptom with the menopause, she only knew when her period stopped suddenly. I was hoping to take after her for that, not so sure.

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Your Mom maybe had symptoms but never mentioned them to you.,..my Mom was like that. I don't get headaches....

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We have discussed it at length and she says she doesn't recall any uncomfortable symptoms... Just lucky I guess :) I'm going to have to take the plunge and see my GP, something I hate doing as I am often fobbed off and made to feel like a hypochondriac.

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Hi Maple Moose,

I had my thyroid removed 20 years ago.It was difficult to know when I started the menopause as I had a Mirena coil for many years, so didn't have periods.I started HRT patches at 48 due to my horendous migraines which were hormonal related.It did help with these and I managed to carry on working until 52 when I got the chance to take early retirement, which improved everything, as I lost the stress which was causing problems I didn't realise.I came off the HRT at 60 as I had a scare with a breast biopsy,fortunately it was benign, but I thought I should get off it.

I am now 62 and since coming off the HRT it is like I am starting the menopause again!

Hot flushes all the time, night sweats,forgetfulness.

I was under the impression that I would go on HRT for a while and I would be over the menopause when I came off it, but in fact it has delayed the menopause for me.

I would say to anyone about to go on it, think carefully about it and if it is something that you can't cope with then of course go on it,but be aware that you may start all the hot flushes again when you eventually come off it.

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Thank you that's what I thought. I can't totally pinpoint it to the menopause as I am also experiencing thumping headaches and fluttering sensations a bit like the high blood pressure I had when I was pregnant with my twins. It's come in a of a sudden.

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