Monday, September 7, 2015



I promised you all last week that I would share my results, so that if it helps even one person, it will be worth it for me.

I had my ultrasound last Monday, and a thorough explanation of the blood work that was done the week prior.  Here's the results:

Through a process of elimination and my physician's expert knowledge, she has deduced that I have a condition called Adenomyosis.  I had already assumed this, as my previous physician told me 2 years ago that it appeared I may have this.  Here's a good definition of it:

Adenomyosis (ad-uh-no-my-O-sis) occurs when endometrial tissue, which normally lines the uterus, exists within and grows into the muscular wall of the uterus. The displaced endometrial tissue continues to act as it normally would — thickening, breaking down and bleeding — during each menstrual cycle. An enlarged uterus and painful, heavy periods can result.

I won't totally gross you all out by listing the symptoms, but if you Google the condition you can find the list of symptoms and guess what?!  I have ALL of them!  Not to mention my uterus is almost twice the normal size. (yay me!  NOT)

One of the "cures" for this condition is menopause, which is where we get into the blood work results.  It appears, based on my results, that I am at least several more years away from "the change", and since my cycles are almost like clockwork, I have many more months of agony to go along with the wait.  Other treatments include birth control pills to supposedly lighten things up (they never, ever have), an IUD (been there, done that, didn't work for me), continue taking Lysteda (helps some, cuts it down by maybe 40% if it's a lucky day), ablation (I'll explain in a minute), or having a partial hysterectomy.

Lysteda has been a help since I started taking it, but cycles are still painful and what I would think are heavier than the average woman's.  I'll continue taking it for now, until we can decide on a more permanent solution.

Ablation - simplified definition - the inside of the uterus is burned to destroy the lining.  Up to 40% of women cease having periods, and for those that continue having periods, 80-90% of those women have much, much lighter periods (and based on my luck and track record, I will be in the 10-20% that still have ball-busting periods).  The doctor also requires one spouse to be "fixed", as a pregnancy after an ablation can be life-threateningly dangerous.

Partial hysterectomy - removing the uterus.  The only 100%, sure-fire way to "cure" adenomyosis when you cannot wait for menopause.

I have shared on here before that I would love nothing more than to be able to have another child, so I asked my doctor what my real chances were, based on my hormone tests and the adenomyosis.  Her response - "if you got pregnant naturally, you and I would both be famous, and I'd be writing papers and getting published".  Statistics I read for women my age were that less than 1% of women would get pregnant without some type of intervention, and with adenomyosis, the risk of uterine rupture in the 2nd and 3rd trimester was fairly high.  Not to mention the risk of having a child with down syndrome and other birth defects is about 1 in 30 for us old ladies.  Risks to my health and a possible baby's health that I just cannot take.

I would honestly love to never worry about having a period of any kind again, but a partial hysterectomy is a really major surgery, requiring 4-6 weeks out of work, and while technically I can do that, I really don't want to do that.  Plus, insurance likely wouldn't pay for it, as I don't have signs of fibroids or cancer or other issues that generally warrant a hysterectomy.  So most likely I will be doing the ablation to give it a shot and see if that will help.  I really think it would probably be beneficial, I just worry that I will still have the ovary pain that is like knives stabbing me in the groin.  
I suppose it's time for me to start coming up with all the questions I can, to get those answered so I can make a final decision.  

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