PCOS, fibroids, weight loss
I was on birth control a few years after I first began having my period (wouldn't get period every month, two months, three months), and continued taking birth control for quite a few years until about eight years ago. I was getting my period every month after stopping BC, but about six years ago, I began having more acne and headaches around the time of my period and began experiencing weight gain on a slow, steady basis. I didn't worry about the headaches or acne at first, but did make steps toward losing the weight - I went organic, watched what I ate (no fried or processed foods, foods that would take energy to break down like greens, fiber, etc.) and worked out even more. (I had already been running 3 miles each time I worked out during the week - about 3-4 times a week, so 9-12 miles a week.) I added yoga and weight toning on days where I wasn't running and had one day a week that I would rest and not work out. I initially lost five pounds after a month, and then, the incline in weight started again. It felt like no matter what I did, I was unable to even maintain my weight, nevermind losing it! It was frustrating - I gained 70 pounds despite all my attempts at losing weight. Over time, the headaches also grew into migraines - ones so bad that they made me dizzy, see spots, and debilitated me. When they were first transitioning to migraines, I'd take ibuprofen and one or two a day would keep the migraine at headache level (if you know me, you know I am very hesitant to take medicine). The migraines became persistent and I was up to 3-4 ibuprofen a day for two days. I definitely didn't want to continue that! I tried taking iron and vitamin C, which seemed to help, but still knew that it was highly unusual to have a migraine for 2.5 days, especially combined with my other symptoms - the weight gain became more and the acne became painful cysts. Because of the migraines, I couldn't leave the house and it was a killer to just move from a seated to standing position or vice versa. My periods also got more and more painful - back aches, toilet runs, excessive bleeding and clots. I also began experiencing vaginal bleeding after completing strenuous activity (such as running or mowing the lawn).
FINALLY, I went to see doctors. After relating to them the above-mentioned anecdote, plus giving them the family history of PCOS in my family, I was scheduled for an ultrasound and bloodwork. The results came back for PCOS and fibroids, my thyroid and iron levels were acceptable (I had the blood work done when I had a migraine and didn't take anything). The morning of my blood draw, my migraine was so insufferable, I ended up having to pull the car over and opening my door just in time to vomit on the roadway. This was a new migraine level that I definitely didn't want to become the new "norm." Of course, there is no conclusive research regarding fibroids for different symptoms that I have experienced, but I do have larger ones by my bladder, spine, and a section of intestine. One doctor told me to lose weight, I should try walking 30 minutes a day. Another one told me that getting pregnant may initially cause me to gain ten pounds, but that I'd be down 15 pounds after delivery. Don't worry, I'm definitely not going back to him! So much wrong with that "care."