Menopause Expert Forum
Thyroid surgery and menopause
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Thyroid surgery and menopause

I had a total thyroidectomy (TT) in Dec 06 for papillary carcinoma and radiation iodine therapy (RAI) in Jan 07.  Shortly after RAi I began experience hot flashes and was told by my primary care physician that I am in full blown menopause at age 46.  I read an article on line that said having major surgery and/or radiation therapy can kick you into menopause.  My question is...Is this correct?   Also can menopause cause insomnia?  I am on 150 mcgs of levothyroxine for thyroid cancer suppression.  Before my TT I was diagnosed with Graves Disease and had trouble sleeping back then, but not to the extent I have now.  I took Ambian for 1 month and still had trouble sleeping.  Some nights I would only get maybe 1 hr of sleep.  I have been on Lunesta for about 2 weeks and that is working  much better, but how long can I stay on Lunesta?
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At age 46, the type of treatment you had along with thyroid cancer could throw you into menopause, especially with a history of Graves disease. Your thyroid hormones could also still be adjusting and that can affect how you feel as well. It takes a while, at least 6 months, for thyroid levels to get regulated after what you've been through.

Menopause can certainly affect sleep. It is very common and one of the most frequent symptoms.

Lunesta is not supposed to be addictive and is supposed to be safe for long term. New sleep aids continue to come out such as Rozerem that are also not supposed to be addictive. Estrogen is very effective for sleep problems related to menopause. You might want to talk with your doctor about that as a treatment as well.
Machelle Seibel, MD
3 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
Can menopause return after thyroidectomy..I just got my dosage of thyroid medicine readjusted after thyroidectomy but it looks like my menopause is reversed.. In the last couple of days suddenly I  am having irregular periods.
Could it be that the hormones are adjusted thats causing it or is it another problem I need to look into? However, to make matter more confusing, I had similar symptom just about the same time last year, prior to thyroidectomy.
Any thoughts?
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi, how old are you and how long have you been menopausal?  I know that the thyroid can interfere with menstruation, but a call to your gyn is in order. If you haven't had a period for a year, you need to ck it out.
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