Heart Surgery for Peri-menopause Heart Palpitations?
I wasn’t all that shocked when I read this article but you might be.
It’s a Q&A from the Centre for Menstrual Cycle and Ovulation Research (CeMCOR) in Vancouver, BC. The article is definitely worth a read if you’re anywhere near peri-menopause. I’ll spoil it for those of you who don’t want to read the entire thing – in the article a woman mentions that two cardiologists have suggested she undergo heart surgery to cut the electrical channels in her heart. But Dr. Jerrilynn C. Prior, endocrinologist & founder of CeMCOR has another idea based on her own research. She believes that the 46 year old woman is experiencing peri-menopausal symtoms that can be treated with….you guessed it…..progesterone!
I have lived through similar, albiet less invasive, suggestions from doctors who either over-treat, mis-treat or just plain misunderstand what is going on in my body. This is why I believe so strongly in self-advocacy.
Here are some of my own personal examples:
Infertility: Without ever testing my hormones or discussing why I didn’t ovulate – my OB/GYN prescribes Chlomid – a fertility drug – it works – I get pregnant twice. But 5 years later I get my hormones balanced and start to ovulate (big surprise there) and get pregnant the first month I start taking progesterone. In my view, progesterone would have been the natural choice and one of the first things attempted to enhance my ovulation.
Miscarriage: My OB/GYN suggested to try three pregnancies and if they ALL end in early miscarriage only then would he investigate. After 2 miscarriages I do my own research and demand progesterone – I went on to have 3 children and took progesterone for approximately the first trimester.
PMS: I was offered birth control pills and antidepressants which made it worse not better. My problem was estrogen dominance – birth control pills have estrogen. antidepressants didn’t address my problem which was progesterone deficiency and gave me headaches for the entire 6 weeks I took them plus I gained 15 lbs in 6 weeks!
Postpartum Mood Disorder – My family doctor was going to put me on antidepressants as soon as the baby was born. I believe that this is the treatment suggestion most women are given by their doctors and it may even work for some women. In my case, I didn’t want to take antidepressants and I already knew that progesterone was a possible treatment solution. I sought out an OB/GYN that prescribed bio-identical hormones. I truly believe I would have suffered for years in a sub-sedated medicated state and my situation would have been dire had I not taken the steps to find a doctor that provided my body the appropriate treatment for me.
Panic Attack – I know that most doctors would have written me a prescription for anti-anxiety meds after my New Years Day Panic Attack Scare. In fact, my friend who is a doctor, was concerned for me – I am sure he thinks I have a Panic Disorder because he made the subtle suggestion that there is medication and treatment available. Let me just say that the panic attack was so scary and if I hadn’t related it to my hormone situation I would have been begging for anti-anxiety meds! I just wanted the feeling to go away not NOW but RIGHT NOW! I didn’t get in to see my own doctor for about a week afterward and by then I had been taking my hormones. Instead of anti-anxiety meds my doctor prescribed oral progesterone to keep on hand in case it happened again – oral progesterone acts quicker and differently than the cream I usually use.
Wouldn’t you love to know if the woman who wrote in to Dr. Prior went ahead with the cardiologists recommendation to cut the electrical channels in her heart or followed the suggestion to consider progesterone? If you have a similar story of finding a better solution to your health problems I’d love to hear from you.
To read about my Postpartum PVC’s and other Heart Palpitations click here:
and here: The Power of Hormones