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flu-like symptoms EVERY MONTH with period. anyone else? any help?

(72 Posts)
monthlymalaise Tue 12-Apr-11 11:00:07

So I have a splitting headache, stuffy nose, nausea, body aches . . . like a bad case of flu, only it's not. It's the first two-three days of EVERY period, EVERY bloody month (pun intended). I am 44 and this has been going on for two or three years now, though with increasing severity this year, to the point where it's every month instead of being every few months or every other month. Am completely fed up with missing out on life, having people imply that I'm "sickly" or just making excuses to get out of doing things, having GP make vague suggestion that if I work out the symptoms may ease . . . . This is not "just cramps" or PMT. I have had those and I got on with life. This, by contrast, has me bedridden and miserable.

Who else here suffers with this, and have you gotten any help from your doctor? Any alternative medicine-type treatment work for you? I have been trying acupuncture and have now started on some Chinese herbs. I can't go on like this -- it's interfering with my life too much and I'm really angry that apparently I'm supposed to just accept this diminished quality of life. I am unemployed right now and can't see how any employer would put up with me having to book off sick two-three days a month, either.

SchrodingersCatFliesToOz Tue 12-Apr-11 11:06:56

Vitamins deficiency? Have you try taking a multivitamin and iron?

monthlymalaise Tue 12-Apr-11 11:15:56

Yes, thanks. Very health-conscious in fact. Always had good nutrition, take exercise -- used to have plenty of energy, which makes this harder to bear.

zipzap Tue 12-Apr-11 23:02:59

I'm beginning to get this and was thinking about posting such a thread when I saw this...

So sorry not much to add of any help other than I know what you are going through and will be watching with interest!

I'm 42 and have had mostly sickbug like symptoms ( plus just feeling wretched in general) that have knocked me out a day or two before coming on for the past 6 months or so, beginning to be noticeable enough to dh and me that we try to avoid scheduling anything major to do when ithink it will happen.

Wondering if it is anything to do with perimenopause or hormones settling down after kids. (ds2 is just 3). But previously have noticed when i was working that if I was going to get a bug of any variety chances are it would be approx 1 week before I was due on. Doc I spoke to was bit dismissive of it being a pmt symptom but i reckon its not an unreasonable theory and could be if body was lowering natural defences on hope of getting pregnant.

Thought that had gone away after having kids but now have the faux flu sicky bug thing instead.

Hope you manage to find some answers and a sympathetic doc who takes you seriously...

womma Wed 13-Apr-11 08:49:44

Blimey, same here and the penny only dropped this morning - I thought I'd post something on MN! Bee-zarre. Is it our age? I'm 41 and have ragingly ferocious PMT lately too.

womma Wed 13-Apr-11 09:03:13

I understand that a good quailty vitamin B complex vitamin is a good thing to take to support hormone production.

Also, and this is infuriating, I had an excellent diet from an osteopath which was a three phase diet to help painful periods, which I've now lost. I'm sure this would help the fluey symptoms too, but I've lost the sheet during a house move. Split into approx 9-10 days each, the first part was iron rich food to help you keep lost iron levels up, then there was a calcium and a magnesium rich phase, but I don't remember which way round....any advice from anyone who may know? As much unprocessed food as possible, and only dairy food in the calcium rich phase.

Oh, and no alcohol during your period (a specialist had told me to drink alcohol to help period pain because it relaxes the muscles, so I'd merrily had a few when my period was painful for years and years). Your liver has a lot of hormones to process at the start of your period, so drinking overloads it and gives it too much work to do.

monthlymalaise Wed 13-Apr-11 10:23:06

zipzap with me it started gradually too, sort of, "Oh, that's funny -- I just had some sort of 48-hour flu bug three or four months ago" -- but now it's gone to every month. There was also a phase where I would have a ferocious headache for a day or two before I came on and then as soon as my period started the headache went. That has changed and now the headache seems to start with or just a few hours after the beginning of the period.

womma it took me a long time to figure it out as well. I do take a really good multivitamin (plus other vitamins as well -- I'm very into nutrition). I also rarely drink these days . . . I don't have the tolerance I used to. I quit coffee because I wanted to see if I felt better without it; also I had read that coffee is a phytoestrogen. My working theory is that this might be caused by an imbalance -- too much oestrogen in relation to progesterone? (That's just me, making it up as I go along, as usual.)

I am on day four now and the headache is mostly gone. I have also been on Chinese herbs for a week now and am wondering if they are beginning to help.

idotry Wed 13-Apr-11 17:07:18

Yes me too, monthly I feel flu like. I'm also a believer in the too much estrogen in relation to the progesterone theory giving off these symptoms.
At 35 my periods appear to be getting heavier in process and whilst I've done the multi vit, b complex, evening primrose no alcohol thingy I still feel shit.

Maggiejean Tue 18-Mar-14 16:04:25

Sounds like typical symptoms of endrometrious.

Rbinwkins06 Sat 23-Aug-14 02:38:59

I just turned 26 in July and for four months now have experienced this same thing only difference my ovaries have been tender too :/

Purplerose76 Sat 30-Aug-14 02:18:50

I am the same I'm 38 and get flu symptoms every time before period �� I hate it ,

RealWoman2 Thu 02-Apr-15 23:17:38

I was waitressing in a Greek restaurant back in 2005. One day, a woman brought her son (about 9 years old) in for lunch and he was SOOO SICK! He was barking so bad I knew he never should have been in public. Three days later, you guessed it, I WAS BARKING TOO! This was a very busy time and most of the girls were in Cyprus on vacation so I was working my four doubles and two more for a co-worker. I had a temp of 102 but HAD to cover my shifts. Needless to say, I got very run down and ended up in the ER with 105 fever, body aches, sore throat, etc. I THOUGHT it was going away after two weeks or so, BUT, then I got my period and IT CAME BACK--the 105 fever, sore throat, aches, etc! NOT JUST ONE MONTH BUT EVERY MONTH FOR AN ENTIRE YEAR!!! I thought I was going to die. In fact, I almost DID--three times! After NUMEROUS ER VISITS AND countless vials of blood over a year's time, my infectious disease specialist told me he found Parvo virus (which is something kids normally get but NEVER adults) and some type of Epstein Barr Virus. Both of these were attacking my immune system. He said, in his entire career, he had never seen anyone with the symptoms I had but he knew I was telling the truth because he treated me all along! I had to cut my hours in half and ended up quitting my job for a desk job. (sucks) This helped but only somewhat. It is now 2015--ten years later--and I STILL get run down around the time before and during my period, although, if I take Airborne and watch to make sure i eat healthy AND get plenty of rest, I don't get the fever and sore throat very often. I have my blood tested every year or whenever I feel it acting up and they ALWAYS tell me the levels of infection are high, like I was RECENTLY infected --ten years later! I cannot get a flu shot because of the weakened immune system and I have to be VERY CAREFUL during menstrual cycles and when I DO get sick so I don't get run down. Not sure WHAT that kid had but NOTE TO MOM'S: PLEASE DO NOT BRING SICK CHILDREN OUT IN PUBLIC--YOU MAY END UP KILLING SOMEONE WITH A WEAK IMMUNE SYSTEM!!!

MagnoliaR12 Thu 25-Jun-15 02:36:15

I'm almost 36. I began to experience this when I was 28. The only thing my PCP at the time and OB/GYN concluded is it was hormonal. I was placed on BC to suppress those hormones. I honestly stopped having those symptoms while on BC, but my body doesn't respond well to BC so I had to stop each one I was placed on. I haven't taken BC in 5yrs. I started back with the symptoms, and still experience it. I still have no clue what it really is. I hate others experience it, but I am a lil relieved to know I'm not the only one.

sadfacemikey Thu 05-May-16 22:49:46

no one has updated this hope it goes through but im 17 and am experiencing the same thing not sure if the cause is my time of the month since it is very close or if it is just the flu. It isnt the first time either

Backatcha Mon 23-Jan-17 11:31:16

Hi, would be great to know about any updates? I am 40 and since May last year every month. 2-3 days before I come on, or sometimes once I have come on, I get debilitating cold/flu, tonsillitis high temp, symptoms. I am currently lying on the sofa (more time off work, although am going in after lunch, how ever I feel !! But just cried on my husband this morning, because it's just awful that for a couple of days each month I do absolutely nothing, no school runs,time off work, etc etc. I do tend to take ibroprofen now, which gets me through some things, but I am not a believer In taking over the counter drugs regularly, they are not good long term!
I look after myself, rarely drink, cook from scratch, eat well generally and still feel like this each month. I have seen an alternative therapist who prescribed me some supplements, evening primrose oil, high strength vit c etc, but not really working for me. Not going to the doctors as don't want to take any prescription drugs and it doesn't sound as if they are very helpful anyway! Do any if you ladies have any updates, years later? Would be fascinating to know if it just an age related phase, or anything else?
Hopefully someone can pick this up and reply
Thanks in advance xx

Beth926929 Sat 04-Mar-17 15:56:29

I am so glad that I found this site. I was beginning to think that I had some disease. I have been laid out like I have the flu, no energy, no appetite, flushed, fever. Went to the dr and the antibiotics aren't working. Then today I got my period. OMG! This is it! It happened a few months ago, too. I'm going to my gynecologist and I'll let you know what they say. I cannot live like this! I always had easy periods, I turned 44 and now this? Thank you all for sharing your stories!

providence2017 Sun 19-Mar-17 17:07:09

Hello, I am so relieved to have read that there are others like me. I am 57 years old and for my whole adult life I was unwell every month with flu like symptoms. For the last four months I have had cold after cold and sinus infection after sinus infection. I have noticed that I have had a big fluctuation with my hormones as suddenly my hot flushes have reduced to a few a day from an intense one every half hour. I just made the connection after spending 7 days in bed with a sinus infection and terrible lethargy. I haven't had a cycle in 5 months and wouldn't you know it, today I get a cycle and heavy! I have done some research and it sounds like the Chinese herb Angelica Sinensis also known as Dong Quai is very helpful at regulating hormones. From the comments I have read, it sounds like it has given quite a few women great relief. I have just bought some and will come back and let you know whether it has helped.

Beth926929 Sun 19-Mar-17 19:20:30

Hi, I'd like to update everyone. Went to my on/gyn she gave me progestin pills, birth control without the estrogen. So far I feel better than I have in five YEARS! Let's see how the rest of the month goes! Keep u posted!

frenchietai Tue 21-Mar-17 11:59:26

My 13 year old has been suffering for a year with flu like symptoms just before and during her period. She's just had her bloods done during her period and her protein levels came back not normal. So she's having more bloods done next week which if normal (when not on her period) would show the link between periods and being so poorly. I'm so praying for that result so we can start looking at treatment. So if you've not had your protein levels checked during your period, it may be worth doing so. She's having Serem C Reactive protein test and Erythrocye sedimentation blood tests. I hope this helps some of you.

Daisyjk Mon 01-May-17 17:26:13

I know this is an old post but the women who have flu like symptoms before period with no other issues should do a two month charting of their symptoms for pmdd (premenstrual dysphoric disorder). I have it and you're echoing it's symptoms -especially the girl who talked about pain too. It's supposed to be rare but I really don't think it is. I think we just didn't know about it and doctors are just realizing now "it's not in our heads, it's in our genes".

Good luck!

user1494427269 Sat 13-May-17 17:12:46

Did you ever find an answer for your cold/menstruation problem? I have had this problem for years and is was very difficult to live with. No help from doctors - my experience, as with so many other women was that I was not believed. I resorted to self medication. Because I was resistant to colds just before my period I concluded that is was an hormone imbalance that occurred. I tried the birth control pill - and yes, it worked (I felt and looked really well) bu tit produced other problems. I did various things at various times to try to help myself. I am now post menopausal and discovered that a pill I was given for something else actually made me really well and benefitted me in a lo of other ways - providing that I took it in very small quantities - a particular

Diclofenac tablet. I had no real cold for 5 years, had improved hair and skin, more energy, more stamina, settled mood. BUT the new batch of this tablet does not work like the previous one.
SO I am back to dealing with the same old symptoms. I am suffering as I write!
Surely this has to be an hormonal imbalance. And surely there is a doctor somewhere who has the answer. SO MANY women on line seem to have this problem (not just in GB but Australia, Germany...)and no one, as far as I can see, is getting any help.
I am going to research this until I find an answer but would really appreciate input from other women who have experienced this wretched problem.

Daisyjk Sat 13-May-17 18:00:30

Really would start by googling pmdd...I don't know how it affects women post menopause but if you've identified a link btwn your cold/flu like symptoms and your cycle-that's where I would start.

Best of luck.

Venusflytwat Tue 11-Jul-17 19:28:43

I just found this thread through googling. I get this too! Will look into PMDD now.

Sleilani1111 Wed 16-Aug-17 21:04:47

I have had the same symptoms for 7 months now !! Every month a few days before my period I get flu like symptoms , and no energy. I have had blood tests , ultra sounds and , antibiotics , they can't find anything wrong and nothing has worked . I have changed my diet . I also don't drink alcohol and I am not on birth control , I took out a copper IUD in December and it was shortly after that I started the symptoms . Please keep me updated on any breakthrough you have !! It is hard to live like this every month 😞

Hunkle Wed 16-Aug-17 21:11:11

Watching with interest. I know its a really old thread though.

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