Hormone Zone

March 6, 2009

A couple of people wanted to know what’s going to happen to Lollipop now that her owner (my neighbor) has died.  I really don’t know.  Helen has a brother, so I suppose he or one of her friends has taken the cat.

Geez, LA, I thought my Gas & Electric bill was bad, but $1,300??  The horror.  Honestly, just the thought of that makes me shudder.  I’m not sure when this house was built – some documents say 1909 and others say 1910. All I know for sure is that it’s old and drafty.   I’d love to have the place insulated, but there’s no money for that (or much of anything else).

In other news, after not having been to the gynecologist for four years, I finally went today.  The main reason I made the appointment was to get a script for a mammogram.  I haven’t had one of those since 2002.  That’s very irresponsible of me, especially considering that I once had a lump removed surgically (after an unsuccessful needle biopsy).  When I woke up in the recovery room, the surgeon told me that the cell structure of the mass looked malignant, so she sent a sliver of frozen biopsy tissue for  “frozen section.”  (A frozen section provides a quick preliminary diagnosis.)  Fortunately, the results came back benign.

Dr. OB-GYN thought he felt something during the breast exam, and wants me to have a mammo ASAP.  I have an appointment for the 18th.

We also discussed my night sweats.  He said that the Hormone Replacement Therapy scare was greatly exaggerated, and recommends that I give it another try.  (I was on it briefly several years ago, but discontinued the therapy because my menopausal symptoms were pretty mild at the time.)

I’d be very interested in hearing about experiences any of you might have had with HRT, good or bad.

Song of the Day:  Estrogen by Kyle Riabko

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13 Responses to “Hormone Zone”

  1. I had a radical Hysterectomy at age 33. Took HRT for a few years and then stopped. Stopping was never a problem for me, in fact I felt better. Maybe because I went through surgical menopause? I haven’t been to the gynecologist in years and years. I should go.

  2. karenfromphilly said

    I’ve been having night sweats intermittently for about 5 years now. Tried HRT. My hair started to fall out! I just sleep with extra clothes by my bed now. Tom’s always cold, I’m always turning down the heat. Now I’m dreading the summer!

  3. yaketyyak said

    That’s weird, Karen. Estrogen is supposed to slow or stop hair loss!

  4. LA said

    Since I have such a horrible reaction to any hormone based med or birth control I am staying off the HRT, even though I am having the Worst Peri-Menopause EVER. I even had to stop the soy products and Estroven, they made me crazy too. Too much miso and I get all Bellatrix. If tofu can make me nuts I can just imagine what a blast of actual estrogen would do! Yikes! However I know some women who’ve benefitted greatly from a course of HRT. Bozoette was on the HRT for a long time and she said it helped a lot.

    Funny to think of our houses being built and all spandy new 100 years ago. Yup, the $1,300 was a shocker. Never again, I don’t care how much Mick and Wolf whine. And yeah, plastic over the windows, draft guards under the doors, the whole deal next winter. It only took one whopper like that to bring my inner tightwad out roaring. We might freeze a little but we’ll be solvent. ~LA

  5. LeAnn said

    I would love to see pictures of your house. It sounds so great. Is it in a historical area of town? I had a total hysterectomy in 2003 at the age of 39 just before my 40th birthday. He planned to leave in one ovary so I wouldn’t have to go through menopause, but when I woke up, he told me he had to take both ovaries after all. So I was instantly in menopause so he had me wear a hormone patch. I wore one for a year or so, and stopped. I haven’t really noticed anything without it. I don’t have any idea if there is a difference in surgical menopause as opposed to natural menopause. HRT could be very helpful to you. It probably wouldn’t hurt to try it for a while and if you don’t like the results you don’t have to continue it. You just have to do what’s right for you.

  6. Bex said

    My advice is to avoid taking hormone replacement therapy at all costs. Go thru menopause. It’s crappy but we (almost) all do it and survive. The hormones will just screw you up in so many ways, and you need that like you need another pain in your back!

  7. Amy said

    I also own a really old, drafty house. It burns oil, too. The only thing that has saved me throughout the years is that it’s a rowhouse in the city. That keeps my heating needs low, but in the past, I’ve had to go into debt just to keep the place livable. With oil prices what they were last summer, I was worried about being in that boat again. Luckily, the price of oil dropped dramatically right before it got cold.

  8. terri t. said

    I never tried HRT because I was afraid the side effects would be worse than going through menopause. I am through it…I guess…but I still have night sweats….I have noticed if I eat chocolate at night or spicy foods that I feel more “hot flashes” during the night. I don’t have them during the day anymore…thank goodness.
    And I was thinking, maybe you can get a tax write off for insulating the house…I think it would be for energy saving reasons…..you might want to check into that….via the IRS website.

  9. Jeanette said

    I second Bex about avoiding the HRT. The risks may have been greatly exagerated, but during the study the women taking HRT were developing breast cancer fast enough for them to stop it mid-way through. Any risk at all is too much. You can live with the menopause symptoms. Hope your “girl stuff” exams all come out good!

  10. I may the one lone proponent of HRT! I was on it for about 8 years and I loved it. It evened out my mood swings, lessened the night sweats to almost nothing, and really helped with the hot flashes. I was on a very low dose, which my GYN monitored and kept lowering until I weaned off it completely a year ago. I had no hair loss. I really believe it kept me sane.

  11. No HRT yet…but my night sweats have returned with a vengence…oh, and I have one steel strength whisker that ferociously grows from my chin that I have to pluck once every two weeks.

  12. karenfromphilly said

    I have that damn whisker too!
    My gyn assured me that HRT would not be causing hair loss. But when it got to the point where I could see my scalp I actually read the side effects on the insert of my pills. “Could cause hair loss” And there you have it. Hair came back weeks after stopping. Phew!

  13. Sunday said

    Heh! My mother and grandmother had “that darn whisker” too! (And keep plucking away at it!) My grandmother never mentioned much about going through menopause, but my mother–man, oh, man! Thankfully, she’s never been one to be quiet about anything “feminine,” whether cramps, labor, or menopause, and according to her, they all suck ass. I tried to get her to take some soy pills a couple of years ago, but instead of reading the directions (!!) she took twice as many, then complained of being sick and threw them away. I know they were probably a pretty pricey scam, but dang! I could be going through pre-menopause in 10 years (I’m 34), and my plans include Valium, Bacardi, and diet Coke. Probably won’t work, but I’ll be too high to get pissed at the hot flashes.

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