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jazmina88's avatar

How does a woman who has had a hysterectomy have menopause?

Asked by jazmina88 (11600 points ) April 25th, 2012

I have an uber-dramatic friend who had a hysterectomy a couple of years ago. She is saying she is going through crazy menopause and feels her time every month.

I know our hormones are intense, but is she just being dramatic again? I dont think she can feel what I’m going through.

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25 Answers

lillycoyote's avatar

If her ovaries were not also removed at the time of her surgery, she would still go through menopause, as I understand things. If she still has her ovaries, then she would still would have had her “time of the month,” she could have still have experienced “pre-menstrual” syndrome, even if there is or was no bleeding, if only her uterus and not her ovaries were removed. And yes, she could still go through menopause, if she still has her ovaries. Do you know if she does or not?

jazmina88's avatar

Oh, no….I’m going to have to inquire on the state of her ovaries.

cazzie's avatar

It depends how radical her hysterectomy was and what sort of HRT she might be on. Her drama could be caused by years of learned behaviour in reaction to her past hormonal imbalance, or the hormonal imbalance she currently experiences due to residual problems.

Our endocrine system is very intertwined. Ovaries may be gone, but the other hormones created in the brain and her thyroid and adrenal glands are still doing what they do.

Self talk and habitual behaviors are hard to break the cycle of.

lillycoyote's avatar

LOL. You don’t have to inquire about her ovaries, you could just let it go and let her be her.

@jazmina88 “Step away from the ovaries!”

augustlan's avatar

I had a hysterectomy at a young age, and they left in my ovaries. I’ll be going through menopause, too. :/

jazmina88's avatar

@lilycoyote I freakin adore you!

lillycoyote's avatar

@augustlan “I’ll be going through menopause, too. :/” That sounds future tense to me. Have fun! It’s a blast. It’s kind of like going through puberty, your body kind of goes nuts, but with a lot less to look forward to than when you went through puberty.

lillycoyote's avatar

@jazmina88 I love you too. :-)

jazmina88's avatar

It all started with plants vs zombies.
now it’s rage!!

augustlan's avatar

@lillycoyote My big question is, how will I know for sure that I’m in it? I get hot flashes, so maybe I already am, but I haven’t suddenly turned into a raging bitch or anything. :p

jazmina88's avatar

The hot flashes are a BIG SIGN!

I figure, if you never were a ragin bitch, maybe you will skip that part.
I’m keepin the stress factors at a low.

augustlan's avatar

@jazmina88 Now that I think about it, I never went wildly emotional during puberty or pregnancy, so maybe I will get to skip that part. What a relief!

lillycoyote's avatar

@augustlan I didn’t actually know for sure until it was pretty much over. I knew something was going on and my gynecologist wasn’t much help. She said that she could test my hormone levels but they fluctuate from day to day. And there is pre and peri-menopause. By the time I actually figured out that was what was happening, I was almost done. The only way you really know is when it’s over. When you not longer have your period for a good long time. And symptoms vary so widely from woman to woman. I didn’t have any effects that were totally disabling, just a crazy variety of effects and symptoms. I’m just glad I went through it after some of the studies on HRT came out. When hormone replacement therapy was no longer being prescribed as a matter of course, even for milder symptoms.

augustlan's avatar

@lillycoyote Yeah, it’s the period thing that will throw me off. Haven’t had once since the hysterectomy, silly!

Plucky's avatar

This doesn’t really answer the question. It is more regarding to what others have posted.

My mother is going through it now. It started a few years ago. I really hope I don’t take after her. She gets hot flashes often ..she’ll begin sweating and looking like she’s about to faint. Then there are the moods…omg. She will be all nice and sweet, then it’s like her emotions do a poltergeist spin and she’s flipping out about nothing. Seriously. Here would be an actual conversation:

Mom: (laughing to me on the phone) Yeah, the horses are doing great and… Holy shit, Jesus f*cking Christ, I’m so stupid, stupid, stupid! I have to go! (click, she hangs up).

Me: (calling back later) How are you doing now? Everything ok? What happened?

Mom: Oh, nothing. I forgot to… (she starts sobbing).

Me: Huh?

Mom: (starts laughing) So how have you been, how’s *****?

And so on.

This happens often. My sister isn’t as supportive to her as I am – which causes some really dramatic and wild tangents between the two of them (that I get pulled into). I try to explain that it’s the menopause but she just doesn’t get it. It is awful and I really feel for my mom. But if I go through all this some day… gah! My poor partner.

lillycoyote's avatar

@augustlan Fluther pointed me to this one

a question of @jazmina88,‘s about a month ago

where @wilma says:

“It seems that for the women I have talked to about this, if their puberty and menstrual years were fairly easy, then their menopause was as well.”

Hopefully, she’s right on that one, for you.

Plucky's avatar

@lillycoyote Oh great, I’m so screwed.

Coloma's avatar

Don’t panic yet, my mom was nuts during her menopause, but mine was pretty smooth sailing. I had mostly hot flashes and wacky cycles for a few years but no moodiness or depression. The best part is men- o-pause for me. It’s great not being driven by hormones anymore, life is good. lol

lillycoyote's avatar

@Coloma I think it was kind of the same with me. I wasn’t around when my mom when through menopause, but apparently, my father enlisted a small army of friends and neighbors to keep an eye on her when he wasn’t around. Maybe an overreaction on his part, I don’t know. But I only just went a little bit crazy. A lot, and a rather dizzying variety, of crazy symptoms, just not any one of them so severe that I was dysfunctional. I did miss a couple of days of work because the night sweats made it nearly impossible for me to sleep occasionally. That’s pretty much as bad as it got. I can’t believe I’m talking about all this.

Plucky's avatar

I can totally see how some women go completely insane from menopause. There have been women who have ended up in psychiatric institutions and even prison (for murder/assault) because of it.

Coloma's avatar

@lillycoyote Haha..I think it’s great! 3 years out over here, I was kinda early, done by 49, my mom went on til like 53–54. I don’t miss anything about periods and sore boobs for weeks at a time. I was always estrogen intense, sooo glad it’s gone. lol
I still find a tampon in an old purse once in awhile, and it’s like ” Oh yeah, I remember.” haha

JLeslie's avatar

She had the hysterectomy a couple of years ago, so she either had her ovaries taken and has been in menopause for the last couple of years still ongoing, or as mentioned above the ovaries were left behind and her menopause, or perimenopause, recently started. If she says she feels her cycle, I assume she had her ovaries left behind. Some people seem to have horrible menopauses and are symptomatic for years and years, others sail right through. I think the majority of women who have very bad symptoms are truly having a bad time of it. As an aside: What I can’t figure out is if taking hormones screws things up more amd delays the symptoms from eventually subsiding, or if those women just will never naturally get relief and that is why they seem to need the hormone replacement ongoing to feel close to nornal.

Trillian's avatar

Why can’t I have menopause like everybody else?

chyna's avatar

I had a hysterectomy and they left my ovaries. If they had taken my ovaries it would have thrown me into immediate menopause. I went into menopause about 5 years later. It started with hot flashes, mood swings, etc. My doctor did a blood test and based on it, she told me I was in full fledged menopause. It has gone on for about 4 years. My gynecologist told me that having a hysterectomy sends you into menopause about 5 to 7 years sooner than you would have gone into it normally. It has to do with the hormones being off kilter. I was on homone treatmeant therapy for about 2 years and it worked wonders. It controlled the hot flashes, the night sweats, the flares of temper. I tapered off of them and I’ve been off for about 3 years. I still have a few hot flashes or sometimes the night sweats, but I’m hopefully over the whole thing.

Sunny2's avatar

Why did they call it men opause? (I know, men for menses or month) Still. . .I remember wanting to know how long it took and asking my doctor. He said, when you’ve gone a year without a period. The year was almost up and I had a period. Had to start counting all over again. Then it was free at last! Thank God a’mighty I’m free at last! Glad I didn’t have the difficulties some of you accounted.

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