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Help needed ~ insomnia and anxiety Help needed ~ insomnia and anxiety

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Unread 02-17-2008, 01:54 PM
Help needed ~ insomnia and anxiety

Hi Ladies: I need help. I had a TVH w/ ovary removal on 1-31. 3 days after surgery, i stopped sleeping. My DR. put me on 0.05 estradiol patch the day after surgery. Obviously, the not sleeping was driving me crazy. Called Dr. He prescribed Ambien and said we may have to increase my hormones (i am 35 years old). Went to see Dr. (12 days out - tuesday) because of not sleeping and just very stressed out. He changed me from the patch to .9 premarian - he actually had me take the patch off and take the tablets in his office. He said i would feel like a new woman by friday . I still did not sleep. He said to call him on Friday. Called him, he incresed my pramarian to 1.25. I feel like i am going crazy. i am having high anxiety. cant sleep, my family is worried sick about me. i know i am depressed. oh did i also mention, my blood pressure is high! my BP has always been normal... it is 140/104! it also feels like my dr is just changing things too much? He asks me what I want to do, what I want to try...Like i have a clue! Can anyone offer any advice? I know i am drepressed, i feel terrible. Dr. doesnt want me taking anything other than tylenol pm or advil pm... they dont do anything for me.... he doesnt want me "hooked" on sleeping pills.
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Unread 02-17-2008, 02:08 PM
Help needed ~ insomnia and anxiety

Hi Unfortunately, sleep disturbances are par for the course during the first few weeks post op. Also, they are often exacerbated by low estrogen levels, which your DR must understand since he is trying to get your levels up by raising your dose. He seems to be on the right track, as the .05mg/day estradiol patch is roughly equivalent to .625 Premarin. You're now up to the equivalent of the 0.1mg/day patch - the highest dose. It may be that you just need several days or so for your levels to build back up on this dose. Or, if you are very young, thin and active, you might need even a higher dose to duplicate where you were pre-surgery.

FYI, the blood pressure rise is also associated with low estrogen levels. When I lowered my estrogen dose early post op, my bp went from my normal around 118/78 to 180/120 or so, in addition to insomnia and anxiety. It was quite scary.

Since you've only been on the higher dose of Premarin for 2 days, I would give it a few more days if you can before making anymore changes. This might also be a good time to start an HRT journal, in which you write down the date, which vitamins, supplements, HRTs and other meds you're on, and what symptoms you have (including your bp). It will help you when it comes time to talk with your DR, and it will help you understand what the effects are of different HRT and dose changes.

I'm so sorry you're having such a rough time, and hope you are able to get some soon.

Unread 02-17-2008, 02:37 PM
Help needed ~ insomnia and anxiety

i'm so sorry you arent feeling well. i cannot offer you any hormone advice but do want you to know that i am thinking about you
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Unread 02-17-2008, 04:29 PM
Help needed ~ insomnia and anxiety

Girl I did not SLEEP for I know 2 weeks, and if I did it was 10-15 minutes at a time even when I was home alone, it drove me nuts, i did not want to mix my sleep meds which I do take from time to time with the pain meds. COME to find out it was the pain meds keeping me awake usually they knock people out, NOT me! Once I stopped taking them and took the lower dose of Tramadol I was back to sleeping. Your dr is pushing too much on you too fast and not giving the body enough time to adjust that's why the BP is jumping up too high, Take a deep breath and try to get your body to relax. Your BP going up like that is concerning to me.
Unread 02-17-2008, 05:30 PM
Help needed ~ insomnia and anxiety

I hit the store for some supplements to try today. So far, the St. John's Wort is really taking the edge off of the case of "crazy hormonal women" I woke up with. I feel much less anxious. I know playing with supplements may not be the best idea, but I was desperate, the doctor's office is closed, and I did check everything for contraindications.

I've never been into supplements, but I know the doc isn't going to want to treat me for hormones when I still have ovaries and I've tried antidepressants and hated them. If this is all I need to take the edge off, I'll be thrilled. I also bought the old stand by, Unisom, because it is different than Benadryl, some Valerian root, and a calcium/magnesium combo.

I'll let you know how it goes!
Unread 02-17-2008, 05:47 PM
Help needed ~ insomnia and anxiety

I had to fight with my Dr for something to help me sleep at nighttime. I told him if he didn't give me anything, I was going to call him up at 2:00AM when I was wide awake. He finally gave in and prescribed Ambien CR, but only gave me 10 of them. They really didn't work that well for me . I am 10 weeks post op now and finally able to sleep about 5-6 hours without taking anything, but still not as good as before surgery.
Unread 02-17-2008, 06:27 PM
Help needed ~ insomnia and anxiety

Hi Pam,
I don't know if it is a law, or an insurance thing, or just the military docs, but I was told they aren't allowed to prescribe more than 10 at a time. At first regular Ambien was that way too, but now they can give 15. It is really habit forming so they don't want you taking it for long.
Unread 02-17-2008, 06:29 PM
Help needed ~ insomnia and anxiety

It's very tough not to sleep. I still have problems with that. My neurologist put me on seasickness meds, then Xanax, to help with non-TAH related dizziness. Before the TAH if anyone who'd walked past a bottle of tranqs would get near me I'd be out for hours, but no more. Now both those medications keep me up, so I think our body chemistry may change with the surgery. I have had some success with pm pain meds and Valerian root, but I have to be careful taking anything because of the anti-depressants I'm on. Have you considered trying anti-depressants? That might be the way to go with/instead of the HRT. I know without my Wellbutrin and Zoloft I'd be a wreck. Taking multiple meds/supplements can be tricky but if you consult your doctor or a psychiatrist he or she can help you find a combo that works for you. Meds don't cure everything but they can help a lot of people.

Unread 02-17-2008, 06:41 PM

Hi Ladies:

I know how frustrating it is to not be able to sleep!!!

I became "peri-menopausal" a few years ago. The first thing that happened was the insomnia. I was tired all the time and couldn't remember things.

The things that help me to this day:

1. HOT BATH If you can, take a nice long hot bath before you go to sleep. If you can't bathe yet, then stand under a hot running shower as long as possible.

2. Milk warmed with a leaf of lettuce. Take out the leaf, drink a glass and lay down. A co-worker told me about this one.

3. Grab your blanket and pillow and lay on the couch with the tv on. Hopefully, you will find yourself drifting off!!

This is what I still do when insomnia hits me.
Good luck!!!
Unread 02-17-2008, 07:24 PM
Help needed ~ insomnia and anxiety

Wendy, I keep a prescription of Ambian CR and get a 90 day supply at a time, now I don't always take it but with the high stress life I live my dr felt it was best to take when needed, BUT my shrink gave me one that works better and cost alot less. I take it if I lay there for 2 hours and am still wide awake, I try to do my 40 minute 2 mile walk on the tread mill at least 1 hour before bed and so far it's helped.

Martha, I can't sleep with the tv on the room has to be dark, quiet and a ceiling fan on when I go to sleep. I tried when I first came home from the hospital to bore myself to sleep but the stimiluation with the brain worked against me. My husband can fall asleep anywhere, but I can't.

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