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  • Shared Experiences

    Share your experiences in the Menopause Community

    Welcome to the Healthshare Menopause Community for women and health professionals who have experience with menopause. This is your community and we want to get to know you so please reply to this message to introduce yourself. Tell us what you hope to get out of your community experience. We're looking forward to hearing from you. Happy healthsharing!
  • Find a professional to answer your question

  • Narelle Smithers

    HealthShare Member

    Hi Everyone,

    I've joined this community as I am 41 years old and approaching menopause. While I dont have menopausal symptoms yet I am very interested in all things menopause as I know it is approaching in the future and I want to know the facts and my options.

    Looking forward to contributing and reading.



  • Dr Carolyn Ee

    Acupuncturist, GP (General Practitioner)

    I'm a Sydney GP with a special interest in women's health especially menopause and TTC ( trying to conceive). I specialise in acupuncture, and am … View Profile

    Hi Nicky and all of the Healthshare community,

    As you can see from my post “Can acupuncture help hot flushes?” I'm a researcher interested in the effectiveness of acupuncture for hot flushes. I am an integrative GP who practises conventional and complementary medicine and acupuncture, and I started this research years ago when I found I had little to offer women who came to me with their hot flushes. I still see “flushing” women every week. Apart from trying to find solutions for symptomatic treatment, I find that the menopause is an ideal time to make lifestyle changes, especially those that help prevent heart disease and osteoporosis, both of which are more common after the last menstrual period. One of the biggest lifestyle changes of all is probably making more “me” time to improve health and wellbeing - as women in midlife are typically working hard, looking after ageing parents, seeing to teenage and young adult children's needs (and sometimes grandchildren), and also perhaps coping with the onset of their partner's chronic illness. I find it rewarding to play a part in assisting women in midlife to improve their overall health.

  • Jane Woodward

    HealthShare Member


    I am 48 years old and feeling like I have be living in hell for the past 3 years,  Before I had my daughter at age 36 I suffered severely with PMS then magically it disappeared after birth of daughter, before daughter had been on every type of contraceptive pills , devices , arm implants etc most having little or no effect on my PMS and sometimes making it worse. After approx 8 years after child birth the symptoms started to come back. I also noticed that my cycle was getting longer and longer, Presenting to the GP I was given antidepressants 10 different varieties in the last 3 years most the dose was increased when I presented back to GP with no improvement , they added in products such as duromine to keep me awake because the side effects of the antidepressant, It has steadily got worse in the last year and one thing I noticed and kept reporting to GP that time between menstruation was getting longer and longer sometimes 45 days then 60 days then 90 days, and during this time my especially emotional state got worse the only time in the last 12 months that I feel my old self is when I am menstruating. The last 3 months until 3 days ago when I got a period I have been in hell I have been totally depressed, anxiety you name it I had it until I wanted to die I could nto live my life like this, presented to emergency dept as I was not in a safe place , spoke to psychologist and psychiatrist gave me Valium and told to see GP and look at hormonal. Was put on HRT no change (kliogest) told to double dose  no change referred to gynecologist who changed HRT to premarin .625 mg  and provera 5mg take two premarin and 1 provera no change in mood went back to GP double the dose of both and here is another antidepressant. I also had a pelvic ultra sound, which showed to benign type cysts in right ovarie and a fibroid in uterus  Symptoms got continually worse and I discontinued HRT and Antidepressent, The only benefit I got from taking the HRT was I increased in bra size from a c cup to a DD in 3 weeks if you call that a benefit. Both the HRT and all the antidepressants I have been able to withdraw cold turkey with no change in problem no change to mental state but at least had stopped the side effects of the drugs I was on. Again as it has been three months since last period cannot live with myself any longer presented to Emergency, again they this time placed me on an antidepressant and antipsychotic  which helped as the only thing I could do was sleep, over the phone was told to reduce antipsychotic did so next day period arrived and all emotional disturbances gone, feel great , so went again and saw psychiatrist and he could not believe the change, So today I had a psychiatrist order blood tests for female hormones  and told me I might as well take a tick tack for all the good the antidepressants and anti psychotics were doing so drop them as well, find a new GP today get a urgent referral to a gynecologist who was obviously a little more sympathetic to my problem and may not put me on a general HRT but more that would suit me, easier said than done, I  have also been seeing a natropath who all along has felt it is hormonal and that I am in estrogen overload and by giving such huge doses of HRT have compounded the problem. My fear is when this period finishes the cycle will start again and how bad I get will depend when the next period arrives. The psychiatrist has ruled out that I am suffering any mental problem that he can cure he is going to show blood test results done today compared to blood test results from 3 weeks ago to a Gynecologist and see if he has any advice. I would say I feel a little let down by the system, I have lost a lot of faith in the medical system other than mental health as they are the only ones putting there hands up and saying we cannot fix you we can give you drugs when you get low to calm or get you to a safe place but his exact words today cannot give you a drug to keep your period going so you keep happy. Where do you turn to ?  I believe I just do not fit into the system and it is to hard. I am an ex nurse so a little knowledge in dangerous but helpful when told to take 2.4mg of premarin is probably not the smartest thing to do in my case, I believe I am in estrogen overload and pouring more into myself makes me worse not better. By begging I was able to get into a GP that does not except new patients but known as being very good,  I have spoken to  menopause clinics not in my state but over the phone and they were going to send bio identical troches but again were doing this without blood tests they would do those after they had me started, It is not the money so much as much I cannot touch feel or see these people other than by phone and gave me the impression they were basically going to be all progesterone. Not that I think they are wrong by any means I feel a that is a better answer than the amount of estrogen I was asked to take. The one symptom I do not have have are hot flushes now I enjoy the heat so maybe I do not notice but other women tell me I would know if I had of had one. To have to present to mental Health as the depression is that bad it gets to the stage I cannot live like this and them believing they cannot fix me but they can give me a safe place and calming drugs , valium etc to take the edge off this is all they can do, No antidepressant from any group has helped just get the bad side effects, where do we go who can help us, The person I have most faith in at this time is the naturopath but do understand nothing will be fixed over night but 3 years…I am in terror of this period finishing because how long till the next one and what state will I be in for the months waiting for it to appear again to get the week relief. My major symptoms are emotional all of them depression, anxiety, irritability , inability to make decisions, joint pain, chronic fatigue. I suppose I have written an essay as I am at my wits end on where to get help so I am hoping someone can help it is a bit like i am walking on the inside of a circle and I just need someone to show me where the exit door is i will walk through but I just cannot find that person. would prefer to be menstruating all the time at least my head , my emotions are intact.

  • Nicky @team healthshare

    HealthShare Member

    Hi Jane,

    Thank you for introducing yourself and sharing your story with the community. It sounds like you have had a pretty bumpy ride so far but you are actively trying to get to the bottom of it and seeking answers from different health professionals. Getting a second option is always beneficial.We hope that your new GP and Gynaecologist will help you, please keep us posted on your results and your journey. Lastly, if ever you need to talk to someone we recommend you call Lifeline's 24 hour crisis line on 13 11 14 for support. 

    All the best to you.


  • Caroline Gale

    HealthShare Member

    Hi Nicky

    I am writing for some advise and information on menopause as I am realy struggling with the mood swings and anxiety,

    Are there other people who are going through this as I would love to hear how they have handled this as I feel I am out of total control

    I am taking progynova and have been for 12 months, have had a visist to a phsycologist and am finding each day a new struggle

    Please help if you have any other suggestions

    I have lost so much weight as I can't eat properly and sleep is also a problem

  • Nicky @team healthshare

    HealthShare Member

    Hi Caroline

    Welcome to Healthshare and thanks for introducing yourself It certainly sounds like you've had a challenging menopause journey so far and I am sure there are others in the community who are experiancing the same and can offer you the support and advice you need.

    Please post your experiances as a new discussion so others in the community and the experts can connect with you.

    My best wishes to you.


  • Jane Woodward

    HealthShare Member

    Hi Caroline, I too have thought menopause was causing these problems and maybe it is partially to blame but have since found out it was not menopause but a Piturity gland problem, I felt as if I was in hell and understand, I do. not know where you live but try looking up the menopause clinic in sydney have you been and seen a natropath ? Truthfully I think  sometimes we blame one thing it is easier to have a label but I know if I did not sit down and right out exactly what my symptoms were no matter how small this would have gone un detected, I doubt now that I am suffering from Menopause at all but because of my age it added up. I like you suffered horrendously my relationships suffered and we broke up  and this added to my misery but it was not the reason I was suffering mood swings my mood swings were what ruined my relationship they did not come after, I know how it feels to feel to be out of control and to go from being a competent human to a complete nutter is difficult to cope with in fact at times impossible. Caroline seek second opinions try everything you can, look for a solution do not give up, try and look at all treatments with  open minded , some may even offend especially if to do with mood swings and anxiety but keep looking for the help till you get it. Jane

  • Jenny Z

    HealthShare Member

    Hi Nicky. I'm glad I have found a community where I can find information on menopause. I'm 49 and have had full symptoms for about 4 months, period has stopped. Night sweats (all night), hot flushes (all day), depression, tiredness, feeling really lethargic, sore joints. I used to exercise all the time, running about 50k's per week & doing weights at the gym. I haven't done any serious exercise for about 6 months and have gained 5kg. I did loose 25kg and am scared it will pile back on. I still have a PT trainer for 2 half hour sessions p/week. I am going to see a naturepath this week. I am really hoping he can help. He also looks at nutrition & exercise. I am a huge believer that exercise will help but I just haven't got the energy or motivation. When I have exercised I don't get that rush of endorphin's that I used to get, emotionally I am numb. I have lost all my emotions & feelings. I am just going through the motions of day to day. I will let you know how I go with the naturepath. Thanks


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