My HRT Experience

By Tracey Leslie

After being put into a ‘surgical menopause’ at 48 and not being naturally anywhere near that stage in my life, I was advised that having left my womb in and only removing my ovaries and fallopian tubes, I would need to have both progesterone (in the form of the mirena coil) and oestrogen (HRT tablet form).

Although sadly when I left the hospital, everyone was too busy to talk to me about it, let alone prescribe the necessary tablets so I left with only the progesterone!  I carried on recovering from the operation and after effects of the anaesthetic when I realised that I hadn’t slept properly for over 10 days, my mind was all over the place, I experienced a panic attack in bed (something luckily I have never experienced before) as a migraine sufferer the lack of sleep and hormones prompted me to develop a bad attack, so along with the tearfulness I was at the end!!

I crawled into the doctor’s surgery and promptly burst into tears! She instantly gave me a packet of Celeste Solo 1mg (HRT) and a lecture about a major operation and rest!

I started the tablets that night and instantly felt better, they worked!

HRT & Breast Cancer?

Now I had a nagging feeling for the following months of the fear of breast cancer and the thought that I can do this without the medication, I’m fit and strong so why not…

A year later the nagging feeling and conversations with family and friends about the cancer worry prompted me to stop the HRT, I began with the tablets weaning myself off them until I was ‘free’ then the mission to have the coil removed (progesterone) that was a battle of wills but eventually the doctor agreed! Although I had no advice or alternative recommendations.

Free at last! I thought as I ordered myself various supplements:

  • Sage – for hot flushes
  • Menopause homoeopathic supplement
  • Magnesium spray – as a sleep aid
  • Californian poppy – as a sleep aid
  • Pillow lavender spray – as a sleep aid

Then it all began, it started with a hot flush, an instant hideous feeling that you are an instant furnace, from head to toe.  Quilt on, quilt off! Oh my the nights of watching the clock willing myself to sleep! Dragging myself up in the morning, then the lack of brain! I felt as though it was all a dream going on around me, I was a shell.  Then the concentration levels and the urge to burst into tears!

Throughout this, my kids were willing me to go back on as the mood swings were unbearable!  Throughout I continued my exercise, which kept me sane and I hoped would help me sleep, but not a chance!

Through work, we drove to the Midlands to interview Dr Louise Newson,  a GP, menopause expert who spoke about the benefits of HRT while clearing up some of the misconceptions of taking the medication.

As Dr Newson explains, one of the main benefits is you ‘get your life back, your symptoms go because you’re treating the underlying cause, replacing the hormones your body hasn’t been producing’.

She also clears up the breast cancer worry, ‘you’re far more at risk getting in a car crash when you drive than getting breast cancer when you have HRT’.

The interview was encouraging and really shows the importance of HRT for treating the menopause.

You can find out more about the menopause and HRT with free guide downloads here

Catch the full interview with Dr Louise Newson below.

If you’re looking for an answer to a specific question, see the video description for timestamps of everything Dr Newson covered.


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