The M Word – Menopause


Foggy wants to learn everything there is to know about M.E. I wrote about periods a couple of years back and so now, with my advancing years (I’m 41 in 2 weeks!! EEK), it seems appropriate to move on to the menopause. Sorry chaps, you might want to stop reading if you aren’t in touch with your feminine side!

Early menopause has been a factor in my family health history for at least the past 2 generations. The women in my family started the menopause between the ages of 25-35. A hysterectomy was to blame for part of it but still, it was early menopause none the less. So, since the start of my 30s I have been braced for it to hit. Nothing yet, I am happy to report! I haven’t had kids so that may be a factor…I am rubbish at biology so…I have no idea!

However, I think it is only right to highlight how the menopause affects M.E bodies. As I said in my Hormones blog, any hormonal changes in our bodies bring about M.E flare-ups. Hormone changes are a blooming nightmare. I am usually wiped out for at least a week in the run up to ‘coming on’ and it makes my symptoms double in severity. With that in mind, I am certain that going through the menopause will be just as rubbish (If I haven’t miraculously recovered by then…..I WISH!). I am not dreading it in terms of it being a sign that I am ageing, I am actually looking forward to my periods coming to an end! But, as something to worry about in M.E terms, it is definitely playing on my mind. I have no idea what to expect and so am hoping that I will merely deal with it as it hits. The M.E Association says this on their website:

Some 70% of women experience physical, gynaecological and psychological symptoms during the menopause – some of which are the same or similar to those found in ME/CFS. So it’s not surprising to find that the menopause can sometimes cause a significant flare up of ME.

If symptoms are similar to what I am experiencing already, should I just anticipate that they will worsen? Will I be feeling doubly rough for the whole month instead of just part of it? Who knows?! If any of Foggy’s lady Followers have experienced the menopause and M.E medley would you consider writing him a blog? It can be anonymous if necessary.

I’ve found a couple of useful articles online. Have a read.

Love Sally
(and Foggy OBVIOUSLY)

1 thought on “The M Word – Menopause”

  1. This is certainly a situation that warrants caution. I had a full hysterectomy at age 31 (endometreosys). I developed CRPS at 45. I was already in the process of weaning myself off the hormone replacements and dealing with crazy debilitating hot flashes (no exaggeration). My doctor strongly recommended that I get fully back on the HRT medication as she had other chronic pain patients who's pain got worse with menopause. It certainly makes sense that ME patients would be impacted as well. I'm 56 now and plan on staying on the HRT medication for as long as I can and pray that I don't develop breast cancer. It was one of those "quality of life" decisions and deemed it worth the risk.
    All that to say that I suspect your ME symptoms will be impacted. If so, you may want to talk to your doctor about hormone replacement therapy.
    PS – I can't believe your birthday is in two weeks! How did this past year go by so quickly?!? 😱

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