Gastroenterology Community
31.5k Members
Avatar universal

Is This Early Perimenopause or Other?

Since posting my last question at 37, I have just now turned 39.  I had a year and a half of stomach aches, severe acid reflux that had to sleep sitting up in bed for 3 months, severe bloating, diarrhea, constipation, anxiety, panic attacks, humming in my ears, smelling strange smells, sinus attacks, eyes wattering and itching, anal and vaginal area itching attacks, nauseau, throat itching, metal taste or bitter taste on tongue.  I have been diagnosed with Raynaud's Disease in my hands and feet and I have 2 thinning discs in lower back with slight bulge to left side in L4 and L5 area.  

I lost 20 pounds as the food I was eating was not sticking and my immune system and digestive system were not working together and told doctors this but they did not listen to me.  I had every test done for digestive issues and all came back normal from CT scans to colonoscopy and my body after 8 months said time out!  So far 4 gasterologists later from 4 different hospitals  - a total of 7 doctors all together.  The only thing the gasterologists could come up with was to diagnose me with IBS - trash can diagnosis and anxiety and all wanted to give me a low dose antidepressant but in reality no one knew what was wrong with me and seriously thought about going to the Mayo Clinic in Florida.  I told them to go take a hike as that was given to my brother and he is no longer with us anymore.

So I went on my own diet thanks to a nutritionist out in California who helped keep some weight on me during all the doctors visits and horrible tests. My body is very sensitive to those drinks you have to take before scans and radioactive iodine and all - which one made me break out in hives the next day and the drinks made my skin turn yellow and blue and have a panic attack right in the doctors office.  I now take 50% soluble and 50% non-soluble natural gluten free fiber everyday, take 1 natural multi-vitamin, 1 align pro-biotic and 2 viactive chews for calcium every day.  I have stuck to a 95% gluten free diet of eating lots of brown rice, vegetables, some fruits, white meats and more natural sugar like agave syrup and have not had any milk products for over a year and I started working out and doing pilates to keep my stomach calm.  I have been following this regimen since this summer and finally gained back 5 pounds and the anxiety and panic attacks have subsided and other symptoms are not so severe.  Sometimes I have to take an acid reflux pill or digestive enzymes as I tend to get so bloated but that is once in a while.  My friends say I look so much healthier now but not 100% perfect.

I also have been keeping track of my periods and they have been consisten since being off the pill of 17 years for over a year now.  I will say my vaginal area and anal area gets very dry and my period sometimes ghosts and this past month was late.  I also have noticed that my worst symptoms - those mentioned above take your pick as it changes monthly but I get 3 days of an attack and comes right around day 12, 13 and 14 when I am ovulating.  My periods start typically right on day 24 of the cycle and lasted sometimes for 14 days but lately is now about 8 to 12 days and sometimes it is just there and no flow and then gets really heavy.  I just get the sense that all these crazy things have happened to me like my mom when she turned 37 but she was diagnosed with full fledge menopause at 39 and my grandmother at 35.  I have not had the hot flashes yet and my blood tests a year ago did not show that much fluctuation in hormone levels.  

Lastly, I bought a ph balance home test.  I was curious to see if maybe my ph levels are off.  I took the tests in the morning each day before 9 am and noticed that my acidic levels and alkaline levels fluctuated everyday and maybe got one to 2 normal readings a month.  I would taste metal on my tongue about 4 months ago and this month the bitter taste on my tongue has come back.  Once again, one of the symptoms that I mentioned in first paragraph comes to revisit and I never know what it will be each month but yep started on day 12, 13, 14 during ovulation.  So I drink apple cider vinegar and water mixture and usually that makes it go away the next day but sometimes it comes back but it has been 4 months since had the bitter taste so why is it back again?

So here is my question - is it all related to early menopause or something else?  I have now been living with this for 2 years and thankfully I have it mostly under control but will I have to live like this forever and do I simply just have IBS?  Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.  I have a gyno appt on Monday and will be taking my journal with me to show my gyno and see if he will retest me for perimenopause.  I am scared to turn 40 now as my mom said that is when she got the hot flashes and she was in the hospital with the hives as well - menopause was not fun for her - must be her Hungarian/European blood in me? Ha, ha  Thanks for your comments ahead!
5 Responses
Avatar universal
Glad you're going to see the gynecologist in a couple days.  Now, whether the Raynaud's Syndrome is contributing to all your issues, like that metalic taste, I do not know as I am not familiar with it.  But I'd be willing to bet my last dollar that since your mother and grandmother had early menopause, so too might be your outcome.  This can cause all your female changes, including spotting and feeling dry, but ask the gynecologist to also do an ultrasound of your ovaries to make sure there's not a benign cyst causing it.  Anyhow, if you are in menopause, despite what any hormone readings may turn out to be, maybe the gynecologist would entertain the idea of giving you a small amount of bioidentical hormones, to ease the transition.  She could also recommend a cream you can put there that will doubly help your dryness.  By the way, menopause can kind of make you feel confused for a while, and mood goes up and down.  Perhaps a short-term tranquilizer on an as-needed basis will help you with those sorts of feelings for a while.

As for the IBS thing, I've got that and the operative word is "irritable."  Mine was caused by taking some medicines that dried out my digestive tract really badly, diarrhea for six months, and to this day I can only eat certain foods.  I might point out that drinking LOTS of juice can dry out a person, so depending on how much you're drinking, you could cut back and add more water, see if that helps your IBS symptoms.  Salads and fresh blueberries help IBS a lot.

I hope you are under a physician's care for that Raynaud's Syndrome, surely they have medicines that might improve your symptoms with that, or could be if you're already taking drugs for it that they just need adjusting by now.  As for your Hungarian background, I hope you are eating what you can of their wonderous foods, I used to be close to a man whose family is from there, and could be some of that will agree with you!  I mean, even if some of the signature dishes don't match up with your special diet, it might be worth risking a night of indigestion to see how one of those meals works for you.

By the way, could be you were allergic to the clean-out shakes that you had to drink for your procedures, that caused you to turn colors.  Also, could be your IBS is because you have a "malabsoprtion" issue of some kind, sometimes it's because you're missing a particular enzyme on account of your body chemistry, so that's a possibility that a specialist can look into for you, if you'll ask them.  
Avatar universal
Thanks for your comments and feedback.  I had every test under the moon done as I was working with a nutritionist out in California who recommended tons of testing and I asked doctors for all of it.  I did have an ultrasound done immediately to look for fibroids as well and everything was normal.  

The Raynauds I have had in my hands since I was 15 yrs old.  When I moved to Atlanta it now affects my toes too and my internist gave me this amazing cream that warms up the digits and opens up the blood vessels.  I tried the blood thinners and they made me have headaches and become dizzy and I got too warm in the winter time.  My body does not deal with any antibiotics well.  I am allergic to pain killers, some antibiotics make me break out in rashes on my neck or stomach - found that out when had wisdom teeth removed and when I had a root canal done.  I am alos allergic to codeine and compozine and any cousin of the stuff so nope cannot take any kind of cough medicine - I get withdrawal symptoms and makes me feel like I am high as a kite!

I am still on strict gluten free diet and drink lots of water.  I am too scared to drink any milk products or juices as they cause diarrhea or acid reflux.  My internist and a Gastro dr both took tests of my bowel movements over a 3 day period and the internist found fatty particles and gave me some digestive enzymes.  But the Gastro dr found no fatty particles and she was against taking digestive enzymes as she claimed not ideal to take for long periods of time as your digestive system will then rely on them.  So I take them when I am just really bloated or I know I am going to be eating a big meal.  I have to eat currently in small portions and nutritionist reminds to chew up everything too.  

I still have some anxiety episodes and where that comes from who knows as never had any of these crazy symptoms before in my entire life.  Each month is always a surprise.  I agree with you on the malapsorption but the gastro dr went to specializes in this and insisted that I try a low dose antidepressant to see if that would help with the IBS but it is very expensive drugs and is for anxiety and depression.  I just do not do well with any pills and they gave those to my brother and he had an allergic reaction to them.  

I am still banking on the perimenopause thing.  I just wish this damn bitter taste would go away.  This is the longest that I have had this in a while.  I am going on almost a week and it went away for one day and then came back. Again, every month it is something new but I prefer the bitter over the metallic taste but this bitter thing makes everything taste just so so - not much flavor that I can taste with it going on right now. Ugh!  My saga continues and hitting the 2 year mark.  Thanks again for your input!
Avatar universal
I took the below quote from *********.com and it suggests allergy may be how come you have that metallic taste, the itching in your throat, anxiety, and some digestive issues.  Perhaps when you eliminated some foods from your diet, you got rid of most of your symptoms becuz you were allergic to the foods.  Also, I want to add that if your sinuses get blocked up from allergies, it can cause things to taste wierd, thus the metallic taste.  Anyhow, I think you have two problems:  Lots of allergies and perimenopause.  So, in addition to going to your gynecologist, you might want to visit an allergist and they can do a skin test to see what all you're allergic to.  Here's the quote from that website about allergic reactions:

The following symptoms may occur when exposed to an allergen:
Symptoms can vary from a mild skin reaction or can be life threatening.

Swollen face, lips, and tongue and throat.
Itching or a strange metallic taste in the mouth.
Sore red and itchy eyes.
Drop in blood pressure and narrowing of the airways.
Wheezing and difficulty breathing and talking.
Changes in heart rate.
Sudden feeling of extreme anxiety or apprehension.
Itchy skin or a nettle-rash (urticaria, hives).
Faintness, collapse or unconsciousness due to very low blood pressure.
Abdominal cramps, vomiting or diarrhea.
Swelling of an area larger than the sting site.
Nausea and fever."
Avatar universal
Thanks for your feedback and determination to come up wtih new ideas.  The doctors here in Atlanta have really been supportive.  I was sent to the top 4 gastro doctors and they blame simple anxiety.  I even went to a Rheumatologist thinking it may be circulatory related and nope he looked at me and said you have anxiety and need to talk with a gastro dr to give you the right type of low dose antidepressant.

I will say that 2 gastro drs and my internist did test for celiac disease and nothing showed up to say that I had it but I hear that you can still have the disease and it not show up on blood tests.  

The allergist route sounds interesting as I would just be curious to see if anything I am allergic to any types of things besides my knowledge of codeine and some antibiotics.  I will look into that and let you know.  I see the gyno bright and early Monday morning and will let you know his thoughts.  Thanks again.  
Avatar universal

You have parasites! Almost 95% of people have some sort of parasite. These parasites breed, and make hundreds to thousands of eggs per day! Sugars, natural or artificial, seem to feed the parasites, creating candida. If you have allergies or suffer from post-nasal drip  (like I do), and have the sensation of mucus or "something stuck in the back of your throat", these are parasites "coming down to feed" on the sugars, dairy, and other mucus-forming foods you consume.

Let me list the ailments I’ve noticed, just in my own health struggles, over the last 20+ years: dry, itchy scalp (NOT dandruff, but I NOW know they’re demodex mites), thinning hair (or bald spots), allergies, sinus issues (PND), “cluster” and migraine headaches, eye floaters, visual disturbances, acne, occasional lesions, occasional ringworm & small white spots that appear randomly over the body (caused by what I NOW know is a skin fungus), easy bruising, anemia, constant weight gain (even when not eating much), itchy skin (especially on the lower legs), abdominal pain/gas/boating/IBS symptoms, vaginal/rectal itching (especially at night), depression/mood swings/memory lapses, body odor/bad breath, and nail fungus.

Most of the time, these parasites are "stealing" the nutrients from your foods, to feed and protect themselves in your body, leading to issues like abdominal discomfort, IBS/Crohn's, Diabetes, Anemia, easy bruising, Cancer, and other ailments.

Unless you go to a holistic or naturopathic doctor, your stool samples, and other blood tests will MAGICALLY turn up "negative". WHY YOU ASK??? Because the medical profession NEEDS you to keep coming in for unnecessary tests and medications, TO KEEP YOU SICK! It's more profitable for the FDA and Big Pharma, to keep one believing that something is wrong with them (whether gastro issues, psych issues, or other more serious illnesses and diseases), than to CURE YOU of your issues!!

I have parasites. LOTS OF THEM! I have been to several doctors that just write off anything you say, but are quick to order medications and other unnecessary (expensive) tests that DON'T WORK! I'm also a nurse (for over 35 years), and don't take one's word as gospel, until AFTER I do my own research.

In my research, I found an interesting link between parasites, an overabundance of candida, and various health issues. I’m an avid gardener, love sushi, grew up eating pork products, have always had pets (that I kissed often, and allowed on my bed regularly), had pinworms as a child (that I THOUGHT had been treated), and as an Emergency Room nurse, tended not to eat the best diet (I’ll admit). Yep, I fit the bill for parasite infestation.
I decided (after the last physician treated me like I was ignorant) to order natural supplements (from Amazon) to rid myself of any parasites. BTW, don’t bother buying anything for a candida cleanse (like I did) because until you rid the body of parasites, the candida won’t be eliminated. This candida buildup creates the “perfect storm” for various diseases and illnesses, including cancers, diabetes, lupus, multiple sclerosis, IBS, Crohn’s disease, yeast infections, etc.

I ordered Dr. Clark's Super W Blend (which contains Wormwood, a POWERFUL anti-parasitic); Organic Cloves; and GREEN Black Walnut Hulls TINCTURE (Black Walnut Hulls capsules are fine, but the liquid GREEN Black walnut TINCTURE is far more effective. TRUST ME ON THIS).

I kid you not; by the second day, I passed worms. Clear, (sometimes white) stringy worms (pinworms) and tons of egg larvae, were in my stools. And, my stools were NORMAL stools; I wasn’t having diarrhea or constipation. Just an incredible urge to go to the bathroom! Sometimes, I went to the bathroom more than 4 times a day! The Super W Blend and Green Black walnut tincture kills the adult worms, and the Cloves kill any egg larvae.

I couldn't believe my eyes! But I was even more focused to get these things out of my body! I even brought in a stool sample that anyone, even those with slight intelligence, could glance at quickly, and KNOW something was wrong. But guess what?? The tests for Ova & Parasites, came back negative. WTF??

So I stopped going to doctors, because I now KNOW what the real deal is. If you want to rid yourself of these issues, you must be PROACTIVE in YOUR OWN HEALTHCARE!!

I will say that once you start this protocol, YOU MUST CONTINUE AT ALL COSTS! If you stop, the parasites regroup, and you experience even MORE issues!  I must tell you, however, that you’ll feel worse before you feel better. I went through the sensation of “things crawling all over my body”. These are the parasites knowing they’re under attack, dying, and releasing their toxins, which poison the blood and leads to intense night sweats, increased body odor/bad breath, and insomnia (especially between the hours of 2-3am). You may have also noticed these worms become MORE ACTIVE around the time of the full moon. For the sinus/PND issues, I also added Oil of Oregano capsules; take 1 capsule 3x/day. For immediate relief of that sensation of “something stuck in the back of my throat”, I break one of the capsules in my mouth, and allow the oil to slowly go down my throat. The oil burns, but it kills worms “coming down to feast”. NEVER swallow the mucus! Cough it up and spit it out! Swallowing the mucus (which contain worms & their larvae) goes to your intestines, to begin their lifecycle all over again!

Stay away from any sugars (even natural sugar), dairy, grains, white flour, white rice, white bread (they convert to sugar in the body, thus feeding the parasites), and any mucus-causing foods, as much as you possibly can. Buy Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth, and put 1 TBSP in water (or another drink) and have that once or twice per day. Be SURE to drink PLENTY of fluids afterwards, as DE tends to constipate you. The DE are tiny, microscopic fresh water diatoms, that under a microscope looks like Chex mix; their edges are sharp, and shred the parasite’s body, rendering them helpless (or killing them), so they can be easily flushed from the body with the other products mentioned earlier. The DE also has other benefits: can be used in a home-made toothpaste (to re-mineralize teeth); for pest control (in and outside of the home, so lose your pest control company fees ☺); can be mixed into pet’s food to kill parasites in their bodies, as well as rubbed into their coats to kill fleas and other parasites, amongst other benefits!

****FOR THE ITCHING: Tea Tree Oil body washes! I run a bath (with the water as hot as I can stand), put a few squirts of this into my water (along with Epsom salt, I find parasites cannot stand this!) and sit/soak for at least 20 minutes. NO MORE ITCHING (for that day at least). Change all bed linens and wash your clothes daily. Vacuum resting spaces DAILY. DO NOT KISS, or allow pets onto your bed. Be sure to treat EVERYONE in your household, as its more than likely, they’re infected too.

This is working for me. I hope and pray that this helps others.
Have an Answer?
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Learn which OTC medications can help relieve your digestive troubles.
Is a gluten-free diet right for you?
Discover common causes of and remedies for heartburn.
This common yet mysterious bowel condition plagues millions of Americans
Don't get burned again. Banish nighttime heartburn with these quick tips
Get answers to your top questions about this pervasive digestive problem