Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) Community
PCOS & Bulimia
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PCOS & Bulimia

Hi there... I am a 34 year old woman.  I am 5'4 and 163 lbs.
When I was just 18 years old my family physician ran hormone tests on me at my insistence because of excess facial hair.  He told me that my testosterone levels were what he would expect to see in a young man and that there were some other hormones that were also "out of whack".  I was horrified (over the testosterone comment) and never returned to see him... I conceived a child with my husband when I was 22 after a full year of trying to conceive.  We continued to try for another child for three years after that with no luck.  
Within a month of having my daughter I became bulimic.  I would binge and purge several times a day.  This behavior has continued ever since.  
It wasn't until I was 31 years old that I was diagnosed with PCOS.  I clearly had the hormone imbalances that go with this prior to conceiving my daughter and prior to becoming bulimic.
I divorced my husband 7 years ago and have since remarried and with the use of Metformin was able to conceive another child.  While I was pregnant the binging and purging was actually quite easy to control.  My baby is now 5 months old and I am again having a very difficult time controlling the impulsive behavior.  Prior to becoming pregnant I weighed only 145.  I gained only 17 pounds during my pregnancy bringing me to 162 pounds.  I never lost a thing after having mt baby which just seems bizarre and impossible to me.
I have made an appointment to speak to my OBGYN this Friday.  I have read several articles on the internet about Phentermine working very well for women with PCOS as well as working wonderfully for women with Bulimia as it helps with the impulsive eating.
I have also read that PCOS can also contribute to impulse control problems...
My question is... Am I on the right track with this with wanting to request trying Phentermine in combination with mt Metformin? Is there something else that I need to be considering?
Tags: PCOS, bulimia
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I was bulemic in junior high and all through high school, but I'm 32 years old now and haven't really had an issue with it since then - even while gaining 60 pounds with my PCOS in my twenties.  I just had to make peace with my body - but I know it's NOT easy by ANY MEANS!  

I'm assuming you are not breastfeeding?  My advice is that you need to seek help for your bulemia before you seek help for your weight gain.  I wouldn't rely on any drugs to lose the weight for me.  I know metformin is helpful in other ways (I'm on it too), but I'm talking about the ones designed for weight loss.  Those weight loss drugs are dangerous and it seems like every couple of years once they've been on the market long enough, they get banned because they have horrible long term side effects.  It seems very risky.  The healthiest thing you can do to lose weight is exercise!  The other thing you can do is eat a healthy, balanced diet.  I KNOW these things are much easier said than done, which is why I think you need to talk to someone about your eating disorder.  I'm surprised that you are so up front and open about it, and yet aren't seeking counseling.  Maybe you are and you just didn't mention it - if so, PLEASE forgive me.  

I'm sorry if I sound harsh - I do know how difficult the struggle with bulemia can be.  I just think that the best thing you can do is seek help to help you change your attitude about your body, and then if you still choose to lose the weight, to do so in a healthy manner - not with pills and purging.

Stay strong!  I also know that PCOS is no picnic.  You should be very grateful that you were able to have your children - many women with PCOS are unable to, even with assistance.  Think of it as doing something for them - setting goals to teach them how to eat healthy and live a healthy lifestyle.

Good luck!

By the way - I found this info below on drugs.com about the dangers of Phentermine.  Given your predisposition to addictive behavior involving your weight, the fact that this stuff is habit forming would be a BIG red light for me!

Taking phentermine together with other diet medications such as fenfluramine (Phen-Fen) or dexfenfluramine (Redux) can cause a rare fatal lung disorder called pulmonary hypertension. Do not take phentermine with any other diet medications without your doctor's advice.

Phentermine can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert. Avoid drinking alcohol. It can increase some of the side effects of phentermine. Phentermine may be habit-forming and should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. Keep track of how many pills have been used from each new bottle of this medicine. Phentermine is a drug of abuse and you should be aware if any person in the household is using this medicine improperly or without a prescription.
You may have withdrawal symptoms, such as depression and extreme tiredness, when you stop using phentermine after a long period of use. Do not stop using phentermine suddenly without first talking to your doctor. You may need to use less and less before you stop the medication completely.

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No, no... I do not think you sound harsh at all.  I did seek help for the bulimia a couple of times in the past.  Both times it was an attempt to lead me down some path to an underlying emotional cause.  Really, it didn't feel like I was getting anywhere.  I was spending a ton of money to go to therapy sessions once a week that were getting me nowhere.
At that point I tried to tell the therapist that I honestly felt it had more to do with my hormones.  That the insane urges to consume a ton of carbs always were the strongest and most severe around the time of my menstrual cycle.  
Since that time I have found several articles on a connection between PCOS and bulimia (in regards to androgens and other hormones).  I have also found articles and personal accounts of phentermine being very helpful to women who have PCOS because of the increased hardship that comes with losing weight.  I also found articles on phentermine being helpful to women with bulimia because it helps to control the compulsive eating.  I read that it has been more helpful to women than even prozac (which did absolutely nothing for me).
I don't believe that the bulimia and the PCOS are two separate things for me.  I believe very strongly in my heart that the two are linked.
I do thank you for all of your words of encouragement... I have tried carefully watching what I eat.  I have tried exercise routines.  If I cannot control the compulsive need to consume baked potatoes, mashed potatoes, bread, cream of wheat... any carbs, really... I am not going to get anywhere.
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