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Guys, I am so happy to say that I have a positive update and one that might help other women in the 45 to 55 age category who are going to do VSG or in the process of having had it and experiencing difficulty getting weight to move.

I am very hard on myself. While I was not being perfect on my journey, I have a tendency to always feel that if something is not going right, it is all my fault. I was a food addict for so many years and did everything wrong that I almost felt like when my weight plateaued and then stopped and then I started to gain weight that it was just because I let myself down.

To cut a very long story short. I had a gynecological emergency about a month ago and ended up having to go through a bunch of tests. It was discovered that I was producing next to zero progesterone and my estrogen was also extremely low. It was causing me SO MANY problems which I will not get into so that I will not digress from the main point. As a result I was put on hormones and almost immediately I started to loose weight again! I have lost 10 lbs since I started taking hormones 3 weeks ago. The reason why is that hormones have a major role to play in weight loss and weight gain. The reason why I was gaining and not loosing was not because I was being so terrible in my disciplines but because the lack of estrogen and progesterone, the total imbalance was actually causing me to GAIN weight.

So I am working with my doctor now to see how HRT may be able to not only help my perimenopause/going into menopause issues but also to help bring better balance to help the weight loss process kick in further. I feel like an entirely different woman - I cant even articulate it the difference in overall feeling but certainly the fact that I have lost the weight I had gained and now back to making the scale go down instead of up.

You can read my previous thread to get a better context of where this post is coming from. If you are having similar struggles and are female in the age range of 45 to 55 it might be well worth your time to have your hormone levels tested and see if hormone therapy can help you get balanced again and improve your weight loss.

I am just one lbs away from being in another weight bracket and after not loosing for 4 months I feel like a million bucks :)

There are many articles and information on Google that you can look up and research regarding hormonal imbalance and the role it might be playing in extremely difficulty in weight loss, especially in women of a certain age. I am just putting this out there for your consideration in case you are a woman like me that may be struggling in this area and not even know it. Talk to your gyno and get your hormones tested. I will soon post an updated photo when I hit that next weight bracket

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I'm really pleased you found out what it was that you lacked!

I'm 51 and I agree that hormones do rule your life in hidden ways. My life was made very difficult by an excess of oestrogen years ago, when I had endometriosis, and only a hysterectomy could fix it. Because I was young, I was put on HRT and I did very well on it, but I had to stop taking it before I had the sleeve, because of the increased risk of blood clots during and just after surgery.

I'm managing OK without it now, so I haven't bothered to start taking it again. But when I first started taking HRT, it made such a big difference to me - and I'm glad it's working for you too. It must feel really good for you not having to struggle against your own body to lose the weight now.

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This is really good information to have! You and I are very similar in size/weight and probably age. I knew my hormones have been all over the place since surgery, but didn't put 2+2 to consider that they're affecting my weight loss. I've been losing very slow and once in a while I'll go up a couple pounds. Fortunately, I've been able to lose them again and continue on a downward trend. I've also been blaming myself and have contented myself to just being a slow lower/glad it's going down even if it's going down very slowly.

I saw my gyno at the end of the year. I don't think we did any bloodwork at the time. I think I'll be following up on this! Thanks!

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I have not had to take nay hormones, after going thru menopause in my late 40's. I probably wouldn't anyway due to high risk for breast cancer in my family. I do however take black cohosh for my hot flashes and have noticed it does not work as well as it used to. I am wondering if the sleeve is keeping e from absorbing it properly?

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On ‎2‎/‎19‎/‎2019 at 9:00 AM, looly said:

I'm really pleased you found out what it was that you lacked!

I'm 51 and I agree that hormones do rule your life in hidden ways. My life was made very difficult by an excess of oestrogen years ago, when I had endometriosis, and only a hysterectomy could fix it. Because I was young, I was put on HRT and I did very well on it, but I had to stop taking it before I had the sleeve, because of the increased risk of blood clots during and just after surgery.

I'm managing OK without it now, so I haven't bothered to start taking it again. But when I first started taking HRT, it made such a big difference to me - and I'm glad it's working for you too. It must feel really good for you not having to struggle against your own body to lose the weight now.

I never imagined the problems that hormonal imbalance were causing me. Hormones even impact how you have bowel movements! I was having terrible constipation for 8 months - the kind that rips your anus and its hemorrhoid city and pain! Since I have been taking progesterone I have been having lovely, regular bowel movements.

Another difference I have noticed is that my appetite seems to be more controlled. If you read my posting history, I had complained how I felt starving the day after surgery and that my appetite never went. It was one of the disappointing things following my VSG because I had this anticipation that my hunger level would have gone down significantly and it never did. Well, since I have been on hormones I honestly have seen a huge difference. I do not feel starving all the time! Its like hallelujah!

I do worry about clotting, to be honest. I am still obese and a diabetic. I had had circulation issues in my legs but that greatly improved when I lost over 50 lbs. No more swelling in my feet.

I can't reiterate enough what a relief discovering hormones were hindering my weight loss is. I was getting very, very depressed thinking I was a real failure and feeling my family judging me because I have not hit the weight loss mark I should be at 8 months out of surgery.

Not only hormones were fighting me, but I also am a diabetic who takes insulin. All of those are added factors and challenges.

Unfortunately progesterone causes insulin resistance big time and the biggest side effect I am facing is having to double my insulin intake.

For the benefit of any ladies who may be reading this, have done WLS and are also diabetic, who may also consider doing HRT, here is some important info. My doctor told me her perspective is to keep taking the progesterone for a year, even though my blood sugar will increase because the main focus is weight loss and once I have lost 100 lbs and I can come off of the HRT, my need for insulin will decrease significantly because of weight loss. So I will endure and try to manage it for the next year. The whole goal is to be able to come off of insulin all together!

“The rise and fall of reproductive hormones at various times in your life can affect your diabetes,” says Andrea Dunaif, MD, chief of the Hilda and J. Lester Gabrilove Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Bone Disease for the Mount Sinai Health System. This is because your body’s two main reproductive hormones—estrogen and progesterone—can affect your blood glucose by changing how your body reacts to insulin. When estrogen levels are high, for example, your cells become more sensitive to insulin. But when estrogen is low and progesterone is high, you can experience insulin resistance—that is, you need more insulin to help your cells take in glucose from the blood. As a result, you’re more likely to develop higher blood glucose.

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On ‎2‎/‎19‎/‎2019 at 10:04 AM, S@ssen@ch said:

This is really good information to have! You and I are very similar in size/weight and probably age. I knew my hormones have been all over the place since surgery, but didn't put 2+2 to consider that they're affecting my weight loss. I've been losing very slow and once in a while I'll go up a couple pounds. Fortunately, I've been able to lose them again and continue on a downward trend. I've also been blaming myself and have contented myself to just being a slow lower/glad it's going down even if it's going down very slowly.

I saw my gyno at the end of the year. I don't think we did any bloodwork at the time. I think I'll be following up on this! Thanks!

I am so glad this post helped you consider getting tested. That is the whole reason I joined this forum, to be very honest and in sharing everything, hopefully helping others along the way.

Remember that you would want to inquire about progesterone and not estrogen as much. Its the progesterone that helps the metabolism kick back in. If I had only knew how taking it would have made me feel like a whole new person I would not have waited. It was only because I had an emergency that I ended up finding this out. They put me on the progesterone to stop me from bleeding because I was having a heavy, heavy period going into almost 3 weeks and I thought I was dying.

There is a HUGE difference in my energy levels as well. In studying since I was put on the progesterone, extreme lethargy is also a side of effect of hormonal imbalance. Thanks peri / menopause! I am grateful for the help, lemme tell you. I wish I had taken more time to actually research and study menopause. I mean I knew it existed and would happen but to be honest I had no clue of what to expect and I had not been prepared.

Any women considering WLS within the peri /menopause age range should consider the hormone factor and its actually not a topic I saw discussed anywhere. Here I was thinking I had spent all this money on VSG and I was a total failure. There must be other women like us in this forum and out there who will benefit from these threads

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On ‎2‎/‎19‎/‎2019 at 3:50 PM, Avery's Mom said:

I have not had to take nay hormones, after going thru menopause in my late 40's. I probably wouldn't anyway due to high risk for breast cancer in my family. I do however take black cohosh for my hot flashes and have noticed it does not work as well as it used to. I am wondering if the sleeve is keeping e from absorbing it properly?

I'm not sure but a good question to ask your doctor. Some things work for a season and then stop. Evening primrose oil is my best friend right now

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12 hours ago, BajanSleeve said:

I was having a heavy, heavy period going into almost 3 weeks and I thought I was dying.

OMG! I had the EXACT same thing happen. That's why I saw my gyno at the end of the year. Totally ruined my Christmas by the way. She put me on a round of BC pills (with progesterone), but I honestly felt a little crazy on them. Very emotional. She said my uterus was enlarged and did a biopsy (I wouldn't recommend that BTW, VERY painful).

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59 minutes ago, S@ssen@ch said:

OMG! I had the EXACT same thing happen. That's why I saw my gyno at the end of the year. Totally ruined my Christmas by the way. She put me on a round of BC pills (with progesterone), but I honestly felt a little crazy on them. Very emotional. She said my uterus was enlarged and did a biopsy (I wouldn't recommend that BTW, VERY painful).

now this is going to be weird because that is EXACTLY what happened to me too! I did the ultra sound and I had a plethora of fibroids but a very thick/enlarged uterus lining. So I had a biopsy which was VERY painful - Lord have mercy - I cried. She put me on pure progesterone (norcolut) and the instructions were to immediately take 4 pills. So I got the prescription filled at the supermarket pharmacy, took 4 pills. 25 minutes later I had a TOTAL meltdown at the cashier. I started to bawl, shake, I was crying and throwing in my groceries into the bags telling everyone to ignore me, snot dripping down my nose, I'm crying saying its the pills, its the pills. I sat in my car and just bawled for 15 minutes straight as people walked by and one nice old man stopped to inquire...…….I was so very embarrassed. The gyno said I might get a 'little emotional' but that was an understatement.

Fortunately once I split the dose into 2 pills every 12 hours, I did not get the emotional overload. I do get some hot flashes that I did not get before and it does drive my blood sugar right up. Thankfully the biopsy came back negative.

But the reason why we keep bleeding like a tap is because when we have a period, towards the end our body released progesterone to trigger our body to turn off the period tap. (you know all this, you are a nurse LOL) So if we are in peri menopause and are not producing progesterone the period just keeps going and going. Not only that but I was expelling chunks, not clots, and I was getting very anemic. Its just incredible how hormones impact our body functions. I can tell you that I am even having better bowel movements since I have been on them.

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@BajanSleeve Our stories are eerily similar. Except for the fibroids, I'd say that you and I have the exact story. I was having the clots and everything else, too! I've had issues with constipation most of my life, so I didn't really relate them to any of this other craziness. My crying jag happened at home, but I just needed to get away. So, I got up, got in my car, and found a parking spot where I could blubber it out. The mall security guard kept casing me. I must have looked terribly suspicious sitting with my car running in the mall parking lot, so I left and sat in a restaurant parking lot.

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