Hormones and Lyme Symptoms - Ladies input

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Jeminij
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Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 1335
   Posted 2/6/2009 2:57 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello ladies. I know for myself, my lyme symptoms are worse due to my change in hormones. Now, I wish more was being done with this connection, but I know for myself after keeping track for sometime that hormones play a major role in how I am feeling. After giving birth 11 months ago I breastfeed for 3 months and therefore didn't have a period. Well, I also felt great. I thought no more lyme. When I stopped and my cycle returned, so did a lot of my symptoms. Now, the week before I start I feel great, like my regular self. Then the week following I crash. Migraines, tired. It is comes on cue almost to the day every month.
 
Now, my question is this, have any of you had your hormones tested? If so, did you do anything to regulate them. I am really wanting to go get my levels tested and take that approach to feeling well. I am not on treatment for lyme because I am not even sure at this point that I still have it. I do think a lot of my not feeling well it hormone related. I am 33 and just had a baby and all is working well, but given how good I felt with no cycle and now with the flux in hormones during the month, I am headed down that route and wonder who else has gone down this road and what the outcomes were.
 
Any input would be helpful. Thank you.

1bitten2xshy
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Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 849
   Posted 2/6/2009 7:06 PM (GMT -6)   
I am in that wonderful perimenopause stage of life...add that to Lyme and we are having a real party now! smhair
 
My hormones are OK, just had them all checked.  However, my LLMD believes that in many woman the Lyme is MUCH worse the week before and the week of your cycle.
 
I am on the pulse method of abx, and during those 2 weeks is when he has me on my abx's.  It has made a large difference for me!

nefferdun
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Date Joined Feb 2008
Total Posts : 900
   Posted 2/6/2009 9:12 PM (GMT -6)   
When your hormones are out of wack it can wreck havoc on your life. You can get blood work done to check your levels. I was "lucky" to go through menopause right before my tick bite so I was already feeling miserable for years and kind of used to it. Bio-identical hormones did wonders to help me and I still use them. They have changed many women's lives.
Even though peri-menopause can begin up to ten years before menopause you are too young for that but your hormones might be off. It can take a long time for your hormone levels to readjust after having a baby. Progesterone is the "relaxing" hormone. It calms you and helps you to sleep better. Your body has a high level of progesterone during the last trimester of pregnancy and then drops off after birth, which can cause insomnia. I had a condition called thyroiditis which can occur about 3 months after birth. You have hyperthyroid symptoms like insomnia, heart palpatations, nervousness etc. Your thyroid is often affected by lyme and this will affect all your hormones. Migraines are connected to the fluctuation in estrogen - usually when it drops below a certain level.
Oprah recently had a show on bio-identical hormone replacement therapy which is not the same as conventional replacement - does not carry the same risk for cancer. It is worth checking into as the quality of your life can be miserable when you have a hormone imbalance. I wish that I had know this when I was younger. I went through decades of insomnia and migraine.

alfers
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Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 2671
   Posted 2/7/2009 7:35 AM (GMT -6)   
Hey Jeminij -
I have exactly the same cycle problems as you. I've never had anything tested (except thyroid). The week before my period, I get REALLY tired, a little foggy, and start having weird heart palpitations. But then the rest of the time I'm fine, like my lyme is gone. Let me know if you figure out the connection or if you get anything tested. I'd love to know more about why exactly this is happening.
Lyme and co-infections since approximately 2002. Diagnosed in 2005. Treated for two years solid. Diagnosed with Lymphomatoid Papulosis in October 2007. Currently back on abx.

Moderator for Lyme Disease forum


Jeminij
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Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 1335
   Posted 2/7/2009 8:11 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks ladies. I strongly feel their is a connection so it can't hurt to get my hormones tested. It is like no lyme exists during that week prior and then boom, feel like crap again the week of so something is making me feel better hormone wise. I hope I can figure it out.

sojourner
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Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 1173
   Posted 2/7/2009 1:36 PM (GMT -6)   
There are quite a few studies coming forward connecting the hormonal aspect with Lyme. Many of our experienced integrative Lyme specialists emphasize the value of balancing the hormones. This is so very precarious depending on all of the variables in a patient's body.

We call this part of Heather's battle the Nightmare Zone and i am not exaggerating.
We have brought a naturopathic specialist onto our team who specializes in later stage disease and who treats naturally (remember Heth is drug resistant) and at the cellular, constitutional level. Its a long, long journey. Heth has come a long way; but oh, how I dread this part b/c it does aggravate the Lyme symptoms, not to mention those co-infections.

Can you remind me where you live, Jeminij? (sorry) Feel free to do the PM me thing if you'd like.
I understand where you are coming from and you have my empathy; but, you are right in your thinking.

Blessings,
Sojourner

ticker
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Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 9208
   Posted 2/7/2009 5:15 PM (GMT -6)   

Hi everyone.  I have always recommended that anyone with Lyme disease, both male and female, have hormone and thyroid testing done.  Lyme can definitely affect hormone levels.

For thyroid testing, I recommend asking to have the Free T3, Free T4 (besides the T3 and T4) and thyroid antibodies tested in addition to the normal panel.  They are not usually done but are necessary for a comprehensive view.  Even if results are in the normal range, they may not be optimal.  It is important to learn as much as you can.  There are some great books and websites for thyroid disorders.  Many doctors treat solely on what someone's TSH is, but the Free T levels are very important.  It can be difficult to find a doctor who looks at all ranges and not only the TSH.

For hormone testing, from what I understand saliva testing is more reliable than blood testing.  My doctor used ZRT Lab http://www.zrtlab.com/  and I recommend them.  They can test cortisol (adrenal function), progesterone, estradiol, testosterone, and DHEA.  Of course many doctors do not believe this testing is reliable, but I do.  To find one in your area, I suggest calling a compounding pharmacy to see if they can recommend someone who does saliva testing.  Compounding pharmacies are the pharmacies that make the natural hormones when someone is deficient.

Some symptoms of hormone deficiencies can mimic Lyme symptoms, so I think it is very important to have this testing done.  It has been very beneficial for me to find out which deficiencies I had.


Dagger
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Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 1522
   Posted 2/7/2009 6:44 PM (GMT -6)   
Check out the book "Screaming to be Heard: Hormone Connections Women Suspect and Doctors Still Ignore" by Elizabeth Vliet, M.D, It is very enlightening.

Hormones vary throughout your cycle but most doc just have you get your blood levels tested and never ask where you are in your cycle. Your results fall in the normal range so they tell you it's fine. Suppose your estrogen shows that you are at the low end of normal. If this is the time in your cycle when your estrogen is supposed to be high, that could mean your estrogen is lower than it should be. Dr. Vliet goes into great detail about testing and explains everything.

She explains the hormonal connections to everything from heart disease to fibromyalgia.

nefferdun
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Date Joined Feb 2008
Total Posts : 900
   Posted 2/7/2009 9:29 PM (GMT -6)   
I have a flare of symptoms every 28 days which coincides with the full moon - exactly - and when there is an eclipse or special celestial event, watch out! Perhaps your cycle is not really so much about your hormones -

pjbat
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 119
   Posted 2/8/2009 9:54 PM (GMT -6)   
I am older (51) and in menopause - worst problem is the hot flashes followed by chills, which happens 24/7. I have suspected for some time that a good part of my problems may be due to hormone issues. My blood tests have shown high levels of some hormones but doctors have not addressed this.  I watched the Oprah show on this subject and decided to take action. I found a good doctor (recommended by my llmd) and just went through all the tests last week. Should have results in a couple of weeks. I'm hoping for some relief from at least some of this.
 


beths
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Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 690
   Posted 2/9/2009 9:27 AM (GMT -6)   

My LLMD told me symptoms do get worse the week before our period, due to the additional stress on our body. I was pulsing abx 10 days before...but I stopped to soon and relapsed.

Back to fighting again.


alfers
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Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 2671
   Posted 2/9/2009 10:59 AM (GMT -6)   
Hmm, this thread has got me thinking...I just looked up symptoms of menopause (or low estrogen levels), and that's totally how I feel the week before my period! But I'm 30, so I sincerely doubt it's menopause or even perimenopause. Basically, I feel fine all month, but the week before my period I get bad nightsweats, increased sweating (during the day) and chills, major fatigue, and sometimes some muscle twitches and soreness. I had thought maybe these were remaining lyme symptoms, but they could totally be explained by estrogen levels too. How on earth would I go about having that examined?? What kind of doctor would I see?? I've also always been unable to tolerate birth control pills, so I have always suspected my hormones were a bit out of whack, or at least easily affected.
Jeminij, let me know if you figure anything out, and I'll keep you updated too!
Lyme and co-infections since approximately 2002. Diagnosed in 2005. Treated for two years solid. Diagnosed with Lymphomatoid Papulosis in October 2007. Currently back on abx.

Moderator for Lyme Disease forum


PainInFL
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 1430
   Posted 2/9/2009 11:32 AM (GMT -6)   
I had the saliva testing done that Ticker is referring to from ZRT. Everything was out of whack, especially my cortisol. My adrenal glands had nearly shut down. In addition to this, my cholesterol was high, my tryglicerides were high, and my blood pressure was high.
It has ALL returned to normal levels. It is absolutely amazing what LD can do to your system.
Dx-LD, Ehrlichia, Bart, Addison's Disease, Infected 20 years ago.
Tx-Doxy 9-11/07.  Pulsed Rocephin/Flagyl/Rifampin/Zith 11/07-1/08. Infected by contaminated Heparin Syringes with Serratia 
1/08-7/08 Tx-Vancomycin 1g 2x day & pulsing 1500mg Flagyl daily.  
Teenage daughters infected from placental/breastfeeding transmission,  16 yr old two rounds of Vanco x6 wks-finished w/Medron & Zith, 13 yr old finished Rocephin IV/Flagyl & Zith oral combo, 17 yr old finished Vanco/Flagyl.  All kids on Biaxin/Flagyl now. 
                                       ALL OF US ARE IN REMISSION!!!
 Co Moderator for Lyme Disease Forum


Jeminij
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Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 1335
   Posted 2/9/2009 12:13 PM (GMT -6)   
I will let know what I figure out. I did have my thyroid tested and all was fine. I had my hormones tested throughout my pregnancy, but not since having my baby so who knows what could be going on, but it is definitely related. I am worse on about day 2 and during ovulation, but the week before I feel great and following childbirth I felt amazing for months so I just have to figure out that connection and how to get to those levels again without having another baby. Hopefully I can find some answers here.

ticker
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 9208
   Posted 2/9/2009 2:44 PM (GMT -6)   
Alfers, please read my post about saliva testing.

Jeminij, many doctors follow outdated TSH ranges.  Also, thyroid results can be normal but may not be optimal for you.  If thyroid antibodies are present, it indicates Hashimoto's Thyroiditis which is a form of hypothyroidism.  Some people who have Hashimoto's have other results in the normal range but treatment is still warranted.  It is important to have the thyroid antibodies, Free T3, and Free T4 tested.  I recommend getting copies of your results.  If you need help interpreting them, let me know.

Martha's Vineyard
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Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 1119
   Posted 2/10/2009 12:25 PM (GMT -6)   
I have the same problem. One week before my period and every thing would hit me like a truck. The migraines the nightmares, the crazy depression, not being able to walk or stand up. And so on. And the days during..the same. Then they would sort of get better.
Many of my Dr.s have had many different ideas on this. My female gyno thought that it would be a good idea to put me on the pill. So that I would have a level amount of hormones and not have much of a periode at all.
For me this did not work. In about 5 days I was unable to walk at all. Another Dr. tested all of my blood and my hormones and everything were fine. They thought maybe meno. but no.
My period coming up this month on the 26th will be the best indication for me weather or not my treatment at the clinic that I just finised worked or not.
One of my Dr.s wife had gotten lyme twice. And she is going through meno. and she was really having a hard time.
2004 in Martha's Vineyard me and my two daughters then 11 mos and 6 all got Lyme Disease. This was only known to us because we found the tiny ticks on us and we got very ill. My dog also got lyme and he went lame.
We have fought it for 4 years to no avail.
We all got it again this summer is Texas.
I am now in treatment in Scottsdale Arizona at Envita.

"The eyes cannot see for for what the mind does not know."


Jeminij
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 1335
   Posted 2/12/2009 11:47 AM (GMT -6)   
It is so interesting. I am ovulating now and feeling my symptoms worse and know that when it passes I will feel better. I am not close to menop. only 33. Could be from having a baby, but hopefully I can figure this one out. It could just be lyme and I know my LD has said that it does go hand in hand with hormones, but that the research doesn't say why so that is what I want to figure out for myself.

The pill did not work for me either. Prior to lyme I was on it for years and just fine and as soon as I got lyme, I had to get off the pill as it caused more problems for me.

bubbalyme
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 2/12/2009 1:51 PM (GMT -6)   
I have a HECK of a time around my period and 8,9 - out of 10 pain. I use everything including glutathione, but eventually sometimes hormone regulation may be the answer. If you can get rid of your cycle you may have a better chance. This brings huge risks though. scool

rosesinjanuary
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 748
   Posted 2/17/2009 8:21 PM (GMT -6)   
I always felt I had two "herxes" regular die off and my period, both were horrible. many years later my hormone test said I was devoid of any estrogen, . Its good u girls are checking your hormones I was ignorant that high levels of antibiotic decrease estrogen and I guess the disease can also mess with it, I went on the pill to put the hormones in and I felt better.. totally
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