I am 49 years old have been experiencing joint pain, primarily in my hips , ankles and thumbs for the past couple of years. My joints feel almost like they are losing their lubrication and are "loose". I have had several xrays and have been to a rheumatoligist to rule out arthritis. Xrays and blood work do not point to rheumatoid or osteo arthritis. As a side note, I experienced similar joint pain (and heart palpitations )when I was pregnant and went away after delivery which makes me beleive that this joint pain is hormonal. I have also been experiencing other perimenopausal symptoms, difficulty sleeping, night sweats, occasional heart palpitations, vaginal dryness, mood swings and depression. My PCP checked various blood work, FSH ( within normal range) low Vit D, ( replaced) and because my periods are still regular, although much less flow, he does not believe I am perimenopausal. I disagree. Is it safe to assume that I , in fact, am in perimenopause?
I have tried several anti inflammatory medications, ibuprofen, arthritis strength tylenol, naprosyn to name a few, and nothing seems to alleviate my discomfort. A friend suggested I try using progesterone cream ( natural Yam) and I immediately felt relief of my joint pain. Is joint pain an actual symptom of menopause? Is progesterone cream safe to use? The comfort I gain from using the cream seems to wear off toward the end of the day. Can I use it twice a day? Is there any thing else I should be doing or using?