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really painful periods ttc

(14 Posts)
Christelle2207 Sun 04-Nov-12 12:23:02

Thanks in advance for reading!
I had very painful periods when a teenager and basically ended up on the pill for about 15 years. I came off 3 years ago (I'm now 34) - to prepare for ttc and also because I think it affected my sex drove.
Yes the pains came back but tbh were ok with regular double doses of ibuprofen.
I have now been ttc for just over a year withouth succes. Whereas my periods are more regular than they once were, they seem to be getting more painful. I suspect I may have had 2-3 CPs over this time because period was a bit late, got a very faint imaginary line on a pee stick and had a particularly bad period soon after, with a lot of very dark, clotty blood (not usual).
Whether I've been having CPs or not my periods are now, most months but not every time, excrutiatingly painful for the first 2-3 days. I have just surfaced after being almost confined to the bedroom since friday evening. Regular doses of ibuprofen and paracetamol help, as does hot water bottle, but it's still terrible. I even have to set my alarm to take extra painkillers pre-emptively in the middle of the night because I have often in the past been woken up with excrutiating pain in the middle of the night and the painkillers just take too long to work.
Anyone else experience(d) this and have any words of wisdom? GP in the past has unhelpfully suggested either painkillers or going back on the pill - clearly the latter is not an option at the moment.
And anyone think there is a link with unsuccessful ttc and very bad periods? I have thought possibly endometriosis but two docs have dismissed this.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sun 04-Nov-12 13:27:24

Who were the two docs you refer to at the end of your post?.

There is a lot of ignorance re endo out there and many GPs do not recognise it readily if at all. In my view some GPs are totally out of their depth when it comes to such problems so too readily dismiss them. An appalling state of affairs really especially when you consider that endometriosis is the second most common gynae complaint seen in women after fibroids.

Endo as well is usually diagnosed through a keyhole surgery op called a laparoscopy although they can go on clinical symptoms too. I would keep a daily pain and symptom diary up till the time you see a specialist; this can also provide clues.

Am no expert but I have endo and I recognise those symptoms you describe as well as how you deal with it at the time all too well.

You really need a referral now to a gynae (preferably a cons gynae with up to date knowledge of endo as well as an interest in it, not some general based gynae) for further evaluation.

www.endo.org.uk is a good website.

Do not be fobbed off, this can affect overall fertility and you will need to be persistant in order to get answers.

Aquarius1 Sun 04-Nov-12 13:37:56

Hi christelle I've had a similar experience to you- huge sympathy - I was prescribed various prescription painkillers and eventually went on the depo to stop my periods altogether as it was so miserable - which was amazing - but took a while to get out of my system when I stopped because wanted to get pg and now back to the painful periods again. Good idea re setting your alarm - my gp always said to try and start taking the painkillers before af was due to start but its not always practical.

I had an ultrasound scan of womb area a few years back to check for any problems and got the all clear. Have you asked for this?

I do think diet and exercise and stress all affect the amount of pain I get. I'm trying to chill out a bit, look after myself a bit better, drink less caffeine to reduce anxiety, and eat more healthily. Have been ttc for 7 months and come a year I think I'll nag my GP for more tests (if no bfp by then). In the meantime I've read up on what causes pain and there seem to be a million and one reasons - but I don't think generally there's a link between painful periods and not conceiving.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sun 04-Nov-12 13:44:50

Internal ultrasound scans do not detect endometriosis deposits if they are there. It is usually diagnosed mainly through keyhole surgery (laparoscopy).
Have had more internal ultrasounds than I care to remember but NONE of them detected the endometriosis I had throughout my uterine cavity because that scan is not detailed enough.

Any symptoms that are cyclical in nature and got worse up to and including menses should be checked out by a gynae to see if endo is indeed the root cause.

I would also suggest Aquarius that you too keep a pain and symptom diary and subsequently demand answers.

You did not painful sex but if sex is painful as well, this can be also suggestive of endometriosis being present.

Aquarius1 Sun 04-Nov-12 14:34:20

Thanks Attila - gosh I didn't know that - haven't any other symptoms apart from painful periods - and they're not always too painful so I'll give it to the 12 month mark I think - don't want to worry about it til then. How long have you been ttc?

Christelle2207 Sun 04-Nov-12 16:18:20

thanks both for your kind words. Nice to know I'm not the only one that suffers from this though sorry you both do too.

Both the gp and the gynaecologist (fertility clinic) dismissed the idea of endo though I have been offered a lap - tbh i don't think I fancy a lap at the moment but am aware it is the only way to diagnose endo. I am seeing gp again next week so will bring it up again. I have had various scans and they have not shown anything untoward at all but clearly there is some reason that I have not managed to get pg and also that my periods are so horrendous.

Heart7 Sun 04-Nov-12 16:23:47

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Christelle2207 Sun 04-Nov-12 16:44:12

thanks heart for that. Back to the gp then. I may be able to get a private referral because I have private health through work - it doesn't cover fertility of pregnancy care but I suppose you could argue that unbearable period pains aren't (just) a fertility issue.
So did your 2 laps sort out your pain for you? really pleased that you finally got pg.

Heart7 Sun 04-Nov-12 18:17:12

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Heart7 Sun 04-Nov-12 18:19:13

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Christelle2207 Sun 04-Nov-12 18:27:28

thanks. both docs said that i would need another symptom to suggest endo, like painful sex, which i dont have.
pleased your lap sorted out the pain too!

AttilaTheMeerkat Sun 04-Nov-12 18:46:22

You do not need more than one symptom of endo to suggest it!. This is again ignorance on the part of the person/people who suggested it to you.

Your pain levels are not normal for periods, far from it. Do not be fobbed off and seek proper answers from a cons gynae specialist in endo (such people do exist but they take some finding).

I am not ttc any longer but I became pg soon after lap type surgery (the surgery I had was not quite the same as a lap).

As I wrote earlier, there is an awful lot of ignorance out there re endo and many women get fobbed off and ignored in some cases for years before being diagnosed. Do not become such a statistic.

Dark brown clotty blood can also be an indicator of endometriosis.

Heart7 Sun 04-Nov-12 22:11:26

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Christelle2207 Mon 05-Nov-12 12:30:47

thanks all for confirming that this isnt normal- honestly thought it was!!!

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