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Hysterectomy?  Any other options? Hysterectomy? Any other options?

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Unread 11-28-2009, 06:32 PM
Hysterectomy? Any other options?

I am 53.5 years old and thought I would have gone through menopause by now. I have two intramural fibroids, about the size of an egg, and prior to this year they did not cause me any real problems other than some cramping and average size clotting during my period. Last year I had periods about every 4 months. This calendar year I have had 2 periods and they were 7 months apart, both lasted about a month and both stoppd when my gyn told me to take Provera. The first time I took it for 10 days and the bleeding stopped. I was supposed to take it for 10 days a month but was so sure I was almost at menopausthat I didn't take it after the first 10 days. Then, I got a period in late October. The period got me so anemic that I had an iron transfusion last week. I feel great now and am back to my fit lifestyle which I have lived for over 30 years. My doctor had me so scared about this last period that I agreed to a hysterectomy. Once I got the transfusion and started to calm down, and do research, I told her I had reconsidered and needed to do something but wanted to avoid the surgery unless I was in a life threatening situation or had cancer. She has been telling me I needed the hyster for about 4 years now due to the fibroids and heavy periods. I insisted on waiting it out because I thought menopause was just around the corner. Earlier this year, right after the first month long period, she agreed I was probably not that far away from menopause, maybe within another year. She said she was satisfied with my situation for the time being and agreed to not doing an ablation or a hysterectomy. She didn't think ablation was the best solution but that was all I was willing to consider. Other than these two months described above, the periods have really not impacted my lifestyle or life because I only had one bad day a month with heavy flow and cramping every time I had a period in the previous two or 3 years. This I could live with until menopause. That has always been my thinking.

I don't know what my next step should be. I am to see my gyn again in two days. I have been taking the Provera for almost a month because she suggested I stay on it in advance of the surgery which I am now against having. I have always fought the idea sure that I could wait it out until menopause which I am still hoping to do.

Today I started having a small amount of bleeding again, even with the Provera. I am scared, confused, worried and don't know where to turn. Can someone help me regain my perspective?? What kinds of things should I ask about in my doctor's visit? How many opinions should I get? Why would my gyno keep suggesting hysterectomy if there really was another option. Isn't it too soon to jump to surgery? Would an ablation ease the flow or would the fibroids still cause this excessive bleediing? So many questions! My gyn is a very good doctor and highly sought out by women in the area which is a mecca of highly skilled health care practitioners and doctors. Thank you many times over! This is driving me insane!
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Unread 11-28-2009, 08:07 PM
Re: Hysterectomy? Any other options?

Hi amidoneyet

A large majority of hysts are done for quality of life issues, not to "save" a life. I would suggest you seek out a 2nd or even a 3rd medical opinion.

Here is a link to the Fibroids section of our Resources Directory: http://www.hystersisters.com/vb2/lin...=browse&cid=26

Get smart about your symptoms and your options, and make the right choice for YOU. I am sending huge cyberhugs
Unread 11-29-2009, 03:03 PM
Re: Hysterectomy? Any other options?

I am 55 year old. I had 'muliple' large fibroids for 23 years. They never caused major problems but they began to grow and cause heavy bleeding, back pain etc the last three years. I tried everything to avoid a hysterectomy but my fibroids were so big I was told I had to have an abdominal hysterectomy. My obgyn told me the fiboids were so big I needed to have surgical stints put in by an internal medicine physician who would assist her with the hysterectomy. I waited to be scheduled for sugery in a month. I continued to research my options. Most of my friends have had hysterectomies. My obgyn advertises that she is minimally invasive but I question that. She barely gave me any information on hormone options even though I told her I had some peri-menopausal symptoms and I am 55 years old. Maybe she didn't want to encourage it because the side effects can be severe. After researching (and praying) I decided that if I was going to have to take the hormones after surgery, why not try it before surgery to see if the hormones would push me into menopause. It was tough but so far it has worked. I had 3 injections of Lupron Depot and my fibroids shrank to less than half the size. I have not had an injection for three months and I am continuing to go through peri-menopause (hot flashes and all). My fibroid have continued to shrink. My obgyn said she had never seen a patient 'cured' (her words) with Lupron. I'm glad to tried the hormones first. It was not easy but it was worth it for me.
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Unread 11-29-2009, 03:40 PM
Re: Hysterectomy? Any other options?

Whatever you decide, don't wait too long. You already were anemic once. A coworker of mine had periods so bad she soaked three maxi pads and a tampon in about 40 minutes. That's a lot of blood. So don't delay your decision whatever it may be.
Unread 11-29-2009, 06:56 PM
Re: Hysterectomy? Any other options?

Thank you to all of you! I am still bleeding today with average flow and very very small clots every now and then of about a half teaspoon in size with the exception of one that was about a tablespoon in size. Changing protection has been about every 4 hours. Sorry to be so descriptive but I am taking careful notes about every detail so that I can convey this to my gyn and any new gyns that I see for second or third opinions. I am also cramping which I didn't have during the period last month despite all of the huge scary clots.

Your posts have given me strength and helped me to focus. I too have prayed that there is a way to make it to menopause without the surgery. Jenikay, thank you so much for strengthening my hope and my faith. Everything I have seen so far about the Lupron was negative. I am encouraged by your story and happy that you are successful in your journey. What is the worst part of the Lupron and does it cause any long term irreversable damage?

Best wishes to all of you and I am happy that I have found a place to share my experience with supportive and caring women!
Unread 11-30-2009, 08:50 PM
Re: Hysterectomy? Any other options?

The side effects are rough. I had monthly migraines before I started taking Luprong and I had to continue to take meds to control them on the Lupron. It may have something to do with the change in hormone levels. The hot flashes were very intense day and night. I had lots of sleepless nights. I am not sure of the long term effects. There's a lot of information about Lupron on the web. My obgyn would only keep me on the 3.5 Lupron depot injections for three months, one per month. The injections were given to me in my obgyn's office so they monitored my symptoms. So far things are much better. I still have the hot flashes but they are not as intense as they were on the Lupron. I hope my experience helps you make a good decision for you. I decided that if I was going to have to take hormones after the hysterectomy, I'd go ahead and see what would happen if I took them first.

Take care,

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