Although dysfunctional uterine bleeding is common, it’s not something every woman can relate to. Just about every woman on the planet understands the nuisance that is the menstrual cycle. Some may hate it more than others depending on how painful or long your actual cycle is.
So that’s why in November 2018 when I started bleeding like a stuck pig out of nowhere; I knew it wasn’t normal for me.
My menstrual cycle had been weird and exponentially longer than what it used to be ever since my thyroid was removed in 2017. One of the biggest symptoms of hypothyroidism is irregular, heavier bleeding or longer cycles.
I had never had excessive bleeding in terms of quantity, but boy was my period killing me softly because I was bleeding as long as 30 days sometimes.
In November 2018 my cycle started out as normal, but then about 10 days in I started to bleed excessively. When I say excessively it might actually be a gross understatement. I became worried when clots the size of my fist started falling out of me and I felt like I was in full blown labor.
I wasn’t able to leave my bedroom let alone my house for fear of bleeding through everything. Pads and tampons were useless and I was graduated to Depends pads. Yes you heard me correctly, INCONTINENCE pads because I needed something absorbent enough to handle the flow of blood,
I felt like the woman in the Bible who wanted to touch the hem of Jesus for healing- I was helpless.
The Doctor’s Response
Well that depends on which visit. My first visit to the ER looked like Michael Meyers had been in the building. After one trans-abdominal and one trans-vaginal ultrasound I was cleared of fibroids, told that “these things happen with no explanation” and “have you considered weight loss?”
Diagnosis? Dysfunctional Uterine Bleeding (Abnormal Uterine Bleeding) i.e we don’t know what’s wrong but some times excessive bleeding happens and we have no desire to investigate further.
I was sent packing with a prescription for 10 days worth of Provera and a “suck it up” referral. 2 days later I’m in urgent care with no end in sight.
My blood was drawn, my abdomen poked and prodded, my vitals monitored and some fluids administered. A release was signed for my ultrasound records and I was sent home with a new prescription for Megace.
This drug seemed to do the trick and in a few days I began drying up like the Sahara. While I welcomed the relief, I was not welcoming of the side effects; weight gain being high up on my list of concerns.
I was told to take the “wait and see” approach to see if this was a one time phenomenon.
Turns Out It Wasn’t
By the next cycle, I was back to the bloody party, and this time it only took 3 days in to make it’s appearance. Once again I found myself housebound, fatigued and losing color in my face quickly.
This time around I had a doctor who was willing to champion on my behalf. She quickly discovered I was severely anemic, reviewed my ultrasound and shared with me that there were questionable issues that have arisen that require further investigation. I was told it was time to schedule a biopsy and start getting some hormone therapy.
And you know what didn’t come up? Weight. Not once did she bring it up until I told her my concerns with being on Megace.
Weight gain is a direct conflict of interest with my focus on having hip replacement.
In the End
I feel much better knowing that my practitioner wasn’t just writing me off as this hypochondriac obese patient. She took my concerns seriously and acted accordingly and never once gave me the “these things just happen for no reason” speech.
If something is off in your body; it’s not to be dismissed. No one knows your body better than you and you have the right to speak up and advocate on behalf of your health because if you don’t, no one else will.
I don’t know where this dysfunctional bleeding journey is going to take me; but I’m sure I’ll be here to tell you all about it as it comes.
Thank you for reading.