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Osteoarthritis and Other Ailments(10 Posts)
I'm near the end of the Perimenopause, I could be post menopause as I haven't had a period since February. In just two years I've developed osteoarthritis in my hands (and in knees, wrists, ankles etc - quite extensive). I had xrays two years ago and they showed no sign of destruction and deformities. Now one hand is displaying physical damages especially in my thumbs. I believe this all happened due to fluctuating hormones. Could HRT slow the progression of osteoporosis? My thyroid has also been destroyed. I am basically a wreck and cry every day. I'm 50.
Have to add I also suffer from incontinence problems, zero libido and terrible forgetfulness.
My DH is 47 and has dreadful osteoarthritis and no, he's not menopausal .
I don't mean to be flippant but it is my understanding that osteoporosis is mainly a mechanical change in bone shape (both wearing away AND extra bits of bone growing in response to abnormal pressure) and has a genetic component (certainly my MiL had osteoarthritis too).
I can see my hands turning in to my gran's hands - big nodules at the joints at the tips of my fingers. I am 50, had no period for 6 months, but have had 2 in the last 2 months again. Lots of hot flushes in bed etc, so I am quite sure I am perimenopausal too.
Osteoporosis is a reduction on bone strength, not shape and in itself is not painful, but makes it more likely that you break something if you fall. The most important thing to help bone strength is weight bearing exercise i.e. walking. Also make sure your calcium intake is good and consider a Vitamin D supplement. Keep active and your weight in the healthy range.
What do you mean by your thyroid has been destroyed? Do you have an underachieve thyroid?
What has your own doctor advised?
You sound very upset and down in the dumps, I am so sorry
Thanks for your reply it's been helpful. I have limited movement in my thumbs (can't button up my son's shirt very well - he has ASD) and get shooting pains in them and a pain that makes me feel nausea at times. I just can't get over the fact that my osteoarthritis just appeared out of the blue. I'm not overweight (apart from menopausal belly fat) and there's no osteoarthritis in my family - even my twin doesn't have it).
I'm hypothyroid, but I don't have hashimoto's. In one year I've developed Lupus (skin one, not systemic) and Restless Legs Syndrome. I'm just thinking there must be a connection between menopause and these conditions - can it be coincidental? I've become a recluse.
It's osteoarthritis rather than osteoporosis (although knowing my luck I've probably got that too - it runs in my family).
Sorry, didn't answer your question re thyroid - I'm on Levothyroxine but I still feel hypothyroid but that could be menopause related. My doctor never reveals the results when I have bloods done - she just says they're fine and they only test TSH levels now. My doctor blames everything on Lupus eventhough my rheumatologist says I don't have the systemic one (my dad did though).
Oh sorry, I also take vitamin D (2000mg), Krill and eat oily fish 4 times a week and get plenty of calcium. Also take iron supplements. I walk quite a lot.
Diamond- what do you have? In your first post you say you have osteo arthritis and osteoporosis- which is it?
It sounds as if you are talking about osteoarthritis. This is something that happens with old age in most people to a degree. But it is true that after the menopause collagen reduces. We have collagen in our skin but also in between the joints where is acts as cushioning. You won't get deformed joints as a result of loss of it, but you would get less dexterity and maybe stiffness and pain.
Given you have other symptoms connected with menopause I'd be grabbing HRT with both hands, just for those! Why put up with it all? HRT is safe and effective.
Diamond A quick google on your behalf threw this up.
It's always worth having a google for research papers on anything health related- loads of info out there- just be sure to choose recent research and not things 20+ years old.
Thanks Polly - I have diagnosed osteoarthritis. If I said osteoporosis that was in error (although it does run in my family). I have bone deformities - they're already visible in my thumbs (they stick out when once they were flat). As I said, they weren't present 2 years ago when I had an xray (no sign of osteoarthritis at all). I'll read the article that you kindly put the link up for.
Yes, I'll ask my doctor for HRT tomorrow. She refused last time by saying (or snapping at me) that she would only prescribe it to women with very bad hot flushes and night sweats.
well tell her you have those!
Worth making sure you are up to date with the NICE guidelines on meno- I left links to this a few threads down. Unless you have absolute medical reasons that make HRT dangerous your GP cannot refuse it. You have symptoms. So if she is not willing to prescribe you must insist and ask why she won't - these must be medical reasons based on your body, not her own prejudices or subjective opinions.
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