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is this perimenopause?

(7 Posts)
SansaryaAgain Fri 08-Apr-16 19:46:06

I'm 39. Before I got pregnant with DS (now aged 2 and still breastfeeding) my periods were about 24 days apart and fairly regular. After he was born I had no periods til he was 9 months and they tended to be longer cycles with lighter bleeding. However, in the past few months I've had two very long cycles (38-40 days), two shorter ones (22-25 days) and then 14 days. I finished my period last week around Tuesday and it started again yesterday though it, and the one before it were lighter than before.

I've also had a few episodes of muscle aches and tiredness so bad that I've had to call in sick to work in the last month. I put it down to overdoing it at the gym, but I've lifted heavier weights before and not suffered so much the next day. I also have zero libido and had an uncomfortable few weeks where I felt very dry and itchy down below, although that could've just been an allergic reaction to something I guess. I've changed to a sensitive detergent for washing underwear and haven't had a relapse of that. But again, I wasn't using a new detergent when this started, it was one I'd been using for ages.

As I said, I'm only 39 but my mum went through menopause at about 42. Are these things hereditary? I guess I should see the GP but I'm sure she'll fob me off. Are there any tests to check if you're menopausal or perimenopausal? One thing I've not had are hot flushes but I've noticed an increase in anxiety and I do have days when I feel a bit low.

Anyway, if anyone can help or offer and suggestions, I'd be most grateful.

ouryve Fri 08-Apr-16 19:56:20

What you're experiencing is often a sign of hormonal changes which may or may nor be associated with perimenopause. other changes, such as thyroid irregularieties can also cause similar symptoms and, in some women, breastfeeding can have an effect beyond the first few onths, even once periods have returned.

It's worth talking to your GP, really, as it's clearly bothering you and affecting your ability to carry out your usual activities.

PollyPerky Fri 08-Apr-16 20:17:23

It does sound a bit suspect. Irregular cycles and dryness around the vulva / vagina are classic symptoms. Hot flushes may not kick in for ages if at all- maybe only after a final period (my own experience at 53)

1 yes age of menopause tends to be hereditary.
2 yes your GP can test your hormones but they have to be the right tests and on the right days of your cycle- and possibly over 2-3 cycles for accuracy.
3 The standard medical advice for premature menopause is HRT to prevent bone loss and higher risk of heart disease.

Have a look at the Daisy Network website a charity led by consultants to help women with premature menopause. They are having their annual conference in June in London if you can get where they will have consultants as speakers.

SansaryaAgain Fri 08-Apr-16 21:50:11

My GP is one of those who always suggest conservative measures so I doubt she'll be of any help. Time to look for a new one I guess, or are there clinics which run these tests?

PollyPerky Sat 09-Apr-16 08:33:57

First, why not challenge your GP? You need to be a bit more assertive!
It's just not acceptable that this is brushed under the carpet. The long term health risks of early menopause are significant. maybe you can print off info from the Daisy network, or join and go to their conference? Or at least ask other women on the forum for advice?
If your GP won't help you should insist on a 2nd opinion via a referral to a gynae.
You may need treatment anyway, so having tests done via a private lab is not really ideal because your GP or a gynae would need to follow up anyway.

SansaryaAgain Sat 09-Apr-16 09:52:57

Yes, I guess I do need to be more assertive. Hopefully I'll get a locum GP on the day I go as they tend to be more willing to diagnose. Meanwhile I'm not sure the extended breastfeeding is helping either, so I need to work on stopping that.

DingbatsFur Sat 09-Apr-16 09:56:34

Breastfeeding can also give you 0 libido and make you dry below. I would say it was more likely than menopause.

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