Friday, February 17, 2012

Last and final update

If you stumble across this blog you may wonder what ultimately happened in this case. This post is several years rolled in one but it does detail the end of my hellish time with Metformin.

After starting Metformin, I was on a roller coaster ride. I'd take it, get up to three pills a day and then my system wouldn't tolerate it anymore. I went years or up then down and up then down with this medicine. Personally, I hate it. I hate what it did to me. I was sick constantly and the GI upset, no matter the dose is impossible to deal with.

Even with taking the Metformin, I continued to get sick. I have seen more doctors than I can remember and have tried pills, an IUD, weight loss (it's back on now, lol) and anything else they threw my way. None of it worked.

Finally, just recently I saw my doctor at the end of 2011. I started a period August 2011 and it was ER heavy by December. I was battling my blood levels and chair bound. I couldn't do much of anything as it was so heavy and painful. February 1, 2012, I had a hysterectomy. No, my ovaries aren't fixed now that my uterus is gone, but I am no longer a slave to the nonstop bleeds.

I have given up on having another child, but I am fighting for a chance to live my life free of the bleeding and pain.

It is now February 17th and I have taken great pleasure in throwing every.single.bottle of Metformin away. I had bottle after bottle in all the cupboards. It was a freeing moment to toss it all in the rubbish bin.

I am happier. I am healthier and I am metformin free but it cost me my uterus.

If you are going to take this medicine, I wish you all the best in the world. I hope you have better luck with it than I did.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Good news and the bad.

Hello Everyone,

I post this with a heavy heart but trying to look on the bright side. Taking the good things with the bad is part of life right?
Well, I stayed on the Metformin, still juggling between the 2 and the 3 pills a day. Funny thing, my mother in law came out about two weeks ago and I had a "surge" of hormones. Possibly stress? I don't know, but it happened. I had symptoms of ovulation and was really trying not to get optimistic about it, but figured something was going on down there.
Needless to say, about a week later my chest started to hurt. I didn't think anything of it and had wine and a few rum and cokes over the weekend but still, thought maybe it was just my ovaries "waking up". I haven't had an actual period in so long that I wasn't expecting anything to come of this sudden surge of hormones. Boy was I wrong.
Two days ago I took a pregnancy test and got a very faint line. Shocking, to say the least. I had looked at that test about 15 times an hour, just staring at the second line wondering how my life was going to change, but still not trying to get "too" hyped because the line was so faint... anything could happen. I asked Bill (my husband) to get a few more tests and to bring them home for me to retest with.
He came home with the EPT +/- test and I took it as soon as he walked in the door. I had been "holding it" in anticipation, lol. I watched the test while it was working and felt my heart drop when I saw no other line form. I waited and kept looking at it. I held it to the light, turned it upside down, took the strip out.. everything- still no line. Bill and I ended up fighting all evening. I guess I was so upset and discouraged that I kind of took it out on him. I went to bed slightly crampy, still with a sore chest, still feeling hormonal...

I woke up this morning tempted to use the other test to see if the line would appear today but didn't want to go through another negative, so didn't take it. By 10 am, I started cramping harder and used the rest room to see AF rear her ugly head.

This is bitter sweet for me because yes, it was hard to see that line.. but hey!!! I Ovulated!! My egg fertilized! Did it stick? no... but I actually ovulated! Hallelujah! I can look at this as a loss, but I take it as a good sign. All is not lost and there is hope that maybe someday I can get pregnant again but maybe with medical help to *keep* the baby.

Bill has asked me to wait until we get back to the US and for me to see a specialist. He'd like for me to lose some weight and see if I can get my periods regular so that I don't have to take so much medication, and he'd like to be promoted in the military first. I can see what he means. I am okay with that.

So I just wanted to let you all know that yes, the Metformin is working. I am going to work harder and losing weight and being more consistent with my medicine.
If you are still a follower of this blog, thank you for you interest. I hope I can keep inspiring others to not give up. It's harder for us, but makes it so much more worth it when the good things happen. I can't believe having a period and ovulating has become such a big "thing" in my life where before I would just complain about it happening and gripe that I had to deal with the cramps. I miss the cramps and the consistency and all of the hormones... lol I miss not plucking my chin and not worrying about cancer. But I ovulated and that is a good sign.. and I am going to walk away thinking about that and not the faint line. Maybe someday I will get a dark line and have a healthy pregnancy, but for now, ovulation is good.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Update, Still on the Metformin. :)

Hello my PCOS Cysters,

I hope this blog finds you all well. I am sure some of you are waiting for your update, so here it goes.

As of today January 17th, I am still taking the Metformin and am taking the full 1500 mgs dose. I don't know why, but I have such a hard time getting all three pills in one day. I hear from others that there is an extended release pill available but I can't get that until we get back to the States. It never made sense to me why I would take 2 pills in the morning and 1 in the evening, but I have been following the Drs advice as best I can. It would make more sense for me to take 1 morning, 1 in the afternoon, 1 evening, but with the 2 in the morning, I have strong side effects in the AM and then they lessen and are manageable by afternoon.

As of right now, I am 6 days late for my "period" and am going to start some progesterone this evening to see if I can bring one on and then hopefully will ovulate next month. I can't really get upset about not ovulating considering I have been up and down between 2 and 3 pills daily. I can report in that I have had a lot more control over my hunger. Food isn't really much of an issue these days. There are certain foods that upset my stomach more, but all in all, I'm not eating all day long like I used to be.

I've lost about 8 pounds since starting the metformin but saw most of this loss when I got up to the full 1500 mgs dose. I still have side effects and some days can be really bad, but I've promised to see this through. I am not losing hair this time. I still have hair growth in areas that I would prefer not to, but it seems not as thick.

I just wanted to thank those who have been reading my blog for all of the kind messages I have received. It is nice to know that although we are all stuck dealing with our PCOS issues, that the common bonds have allowed me to make new friends. I just want you all to make sure that you don't give up or get disheartened by the Metformin side effects. I hope one day that they will find a newer medication that does the same as Metformin without all of the side effects, but for now, it does it's job.

I must warn you though, in closing, that it is not a good idea to drink alcohol while on Metformin. Your liver has to process the medication through and when you drink, your liver then has the Metformin and alcohol to process and it can lead to really bad headaches. If you are dealing with bad headaches with the Metformin, you probably have a buildup of lactic acidosis and need to really push the water. You have to drink a lot of water with Metformin so your liver can process it as efficiently as possible. Drinking compromises that process, so if you decide to drink, keep it to a minimum.

I will post again soon. Take care everyone.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Metformin, Week 1

So it's been a week! I haven't updated because it has been a great week, issue free. Today is another great Metformin day. I can not believe how different this time has been from last.
I have not had ANY bad GI issues aside from some nausea a few times from eating too much popcorn. I have actually LOST about a pound a day since starting the Met again. I know it's not water weight because I am drinking about 48 ozs of water a day, at minimum. I was having problems with cravings in the evenings and started to take my pill when those cravings hit, and they are gone! The cravings have left. When they start back, I take my pill. I haven't had any of the diarrhea like the previous time I was on met, but I think that is also because I have drastically changed my diet- I mean drastically.No carbonated beverages, no alcohol, no sugary sweets. I haven't been eating greasy fatty foods, and I haven't been loading up on carbs. I feel wonderful, really. I haven't had a period yet, since the beginning of September, but I am thinking that I might have ovulated. The "atmosphere" down *there* has changed which means some hormones are actually working for once. I also had some cramping which leads me to think that in about 2 weeks, I may be able to circle another date on the calendar. I see the doctor on Dec 3rd and will be asking for a refill of the Met. I am so happy to have control over my appetite, to actually see the numbers going down on the scale, and to not have the GI issues from last time, that I plan on staying on the medication. I haven't gotten up to 1500 mgs a day, but right now am at 1000 mgs, and am handling it just fine.

So far, no hair loss either. Maybe the key to Metformin working properly is in diet. I think it works it's best when the person taking it works *with* the Metformin to help it fix what needs fixed. Because I am not eating the wrong foods, the Metformin is working better than last time I was on it.

So far, I am sure I made the right decision to start taking the Met again. I will update soon after I begin the third pill.

I hope this blog helps some of you in your own Metformin experiences.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Day 1, again

What a day, What a day.
I took 500 mgs last night at bed time. I usually stay up to read for an hour or two, usually with a rumbling tummy demanding food, but I took the pill and about a half hour later, my stomach was not growling and I was tired. I guess this is why the bottle says "May cause drowsiness" :)
I woke up this morning and my stomach feels a little queasy, but nothing too bad. I actually felt a little hungry upon waking so I decided to do something I never do- have breakfast. I am not a good breakfast eater, never have been, so this morning I had a turkey on whole grain sandwich, banana, and water. The bakery here has some really nice seeded wheat rolls with flax seed which I love. I just hope that I don't end up "paying" for eating the sandwich later on after I start to digest. Time will tell. I know better this time than to eat lettuce, but I've forgotten many of the foods that I don't do so well with. I guess it's trial and error.

On a side note, I would like to list some of the reasons why I decided to start the Metformin again. Well first, I am getting a mustache. Yes, as in hair on my upper lip. It isn't black hair, still light but it is very noticeable. My testosterone levels are high enough that I pulled a hair off my chin a few weeks ago, had one on my chest, and my facial hair is growing longer. Embarassing as that is, I have vowed to put my ego aside and to tell the truth on this blog. I also have only had one period over the last 4 1/2 months. I am currently over a month late which means that I probably haven't even ovulated in quite some time. My weight has blossomed to an all time high and my BMI actually made it to 36.5. I started working out and cut out the horrible foods in my diet a few weeks ago, but my cravings are so out of control that my will power is weakening and I find myself craving salty chips, fried chicken, soda, and candy. Healthy food doesn't appeal to me, but I could eat an entire bag of chips. The cravings for junk are so strong that I think they are worse now than they were when I was pregnant. On the Metformin, I notice that my cravings greatly diminish. I just wish that with insulin resistence, that my body would crave HEALTHY things but it's always the bad things for some reason.

My husband, right now, is away on Military orders so my options are limited on exercise because I do have two children. But when he gets back, which is very soon, I plan on going to the gym and searching out some support groups on base so that I don't make these changes alone this time. My husband is supportive and plans on helping me by not bringing junk food home himself, but I need to start going to the gym too. The Metformin helps me in that because it should help make my exercises more effective. It does me no good to work out for an hour and then come home and fall slave to my cravings.

So if you are reading this, and you are feeling any of what I have been feeling, please feel free to comment. I would love to hear your thoughts.

Today is day one, but hopefully it is a great beginning.

Off the Wagon but trying to board the train. Nov. 17, 08

I am ashamed to admit that I gave up. I gave up on myself, I gave up on my husband, I gave up on my kids, I gave up on my future. I let discouragement and the first bump in the road to knock me out of the wagon and I laid on the ground feeling sorry for myself. Today I begin anew, ready to move forward and to see where the journey takes me.

I am going to try the Metformin again starting this evening. I don't care if I feel sick at first. I don't care if I can't order the chicken wings and the burgers that I so crave. I have decided that the cravings are not my friend- they are my own personal sabotage. I miss having the lack of hunger pangs on the Metformin. I miss sitting at night and being able to focus on my book rather than the growling stomach I KNOW I just fed an hour beforehand. It is out of control. My weight is out of control and I want to take it back.

So what if I lose hair? I have decided being bald is better than being overweight and unhealthy. I may be a bald lady, but I'll be the bald lady without insulin resistance and without the muffin top on her jeans. Ha, I can't believe I just admitted that.

So here we go again, and this time, I think since it is "my" idea and not some arbitraty thing I was going to "try" that I want to just test out, that I will be successful. I figure, unless it kills me, any progress is worth it.

I will post tomorrow how the day is going. 500 mgs of Metformin, ORDER UP! I'm sorry I let all of you down as well and just gave up. I want this blog to help others and all's I did was focus on myself.. well no longer. This blog WILL be a success story and I am not going to give up again. :)

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Metformin Day??? Update

So I havent been around in awhile. I've kinda been at a loss of what to say. My mother in law came out mid may and I went off of the Met because I didnt want any embarassing side effects while she was here. Unfortunately, I have not wanted to restart the Met.
The fact of the matter is, I have lost about 1/4 of my hair. It still is coming out in clumps daily, when I shower, the drain gets clogged. My hair has been gloriously long, thick and healthy for my entire life. Even at age 5, it was down to my waist. I don't know how to deal with the fact that my once thick hair is now thin and lifeless. I am afraid that although I have stopped the Metformin, that my hair is going to continue to fall out. My GI issues are not any better either, even though it has been weeks since I have taken a single Metformin. Everything I eat gives me a stomach ache and my digestion is way off. I have not lost any weight, but I still am not having a normal bathroom experience. I wonder if this is normal.

On the flip side, I had another period this month- exactly 30 days from the previous one. This is great, but not so great because of the other side effects.

I really am at a loss of what to do. I am afraid to go back to the GYN and tell her that this is what happened or else she may want to do the uterine ablation or try another IUD. This really sucks.

So I have a period, but am losing my hair. I had no pain on the met but spent a lot of "quality time" in the bathroom. I have to decide on being bald and in no pain or being in pain but not have most of my hair hit the floor. What do I do? What can I do?

This isnt what I expected or hoped for.