I am 48 and in menopause. I believe it is complete (or almost) as I have gone almost a year w/o a period and my hormone levels are low.
I had an IUD (Mirena) removed a year and 8 months ago. Went several months with no period then had a short period at about 8 months and then had something between spotting and a period but only for 2 days and since have only had a little spotting after sex.
I have had severe hair loss, weight gain galore (I believe my hormones have been out of balance for a long time but never considered menopause b/c wasn't anticipating for several more years).
I have had night sweats and occasional hot flashes (attributed them to being overweight and it being an exceptionally hot summer, which is when I first started noticing them during the day).
I have a + ANA but no other positive rheumotological test.
I have a phone call set with my gynecologist to discuss HRT. The night sweats/hot flashes don't trouble me so much as generally I'm very cold so it's nice to actually be warm on occasion. The hair loss is terrible. I have dark hair and fair skin so it is pretty noticeable and coupled with the weight gain I am having serious self esteem issues.
I'm also immensely fatigued. This is not new but is intense. I've also started waking up early and can't get back to sleep which is only making the fatigue worse.
Not sure if there is any other relevant information but please let me know if anything else is important.
So to my question -- HRT or no HRT? I would love to stabilize my hormones and feel better but my biggest concern is that isn't that just delaying the inevitable and won't I just go through all of this again when I go off HRT?
I've had estradiol, FSH, LH levels checked. Don't I need progesterone and testosterone checked as well? If so, do I need the others checked again at the same time or will results from 6 months ago work? Anything else that should be checked?
Finally, w/o a period, can I just check anytime? And does it matter if it's morning or afternoon? I know some tests matter when.
Sorry for such a long post and an advance thank you for sharing insight and your own experiences.