By now, you probably know that I’ve had to deal with more than a few health issues as the result of getting a complete hysterectomy at the age of 42. You might have also found it as interesting as I have to learn just how many of these problems were tied to unbalanced hormone levels.
I have to say though; one condition that never even crossed my mind in terms of being a potential problem for me was osteoporosis. While I knew that millions of people are dealing with this condition, and that it commonly affects women as they get older, it wasn’t something that I thought I’d ever get.
For example, osteoporosis does not run in my immediate family at all. One of my Aunts has it, but she’s the only one that I’m aware of. I’m not sure if osteoporosis is even genetic or not, but I always think about family background when it comes to the increased risk of getting a health condition.
About five years ago, when I was 43, I went in for a routine bone density scan. My physician figured I was at a good age to begin getting these tests and get my baseline levels on record so I decided to go ahead and do it despite my lack of family history. The test, which was super easy to do, scanned my hips and spine.
The results came back, and I was told that I had the onset of osteopenia. This occurs when your bone density tests are lower than they should be, but not bad enough to be classified as full-blown osteoporosis. Many physicians consider osteopenia to be a precursor of osteoporosis—in other words, it was probably just a matter of time before I was diagnosed with the condition.
To say that you could have knocked me over with a feather is probably the understatement of the year. Along with everything else that had gone wrong with me after my hysterectomy, here was one more thing to add into the mix.
I was saddened and surprised at the results, but determined to make it better. So I asked my physician “What can I do? Can I work out more, drink more milk, and take calcium?” I began doing all three and hoped for the best.
It was at this same time that I also found the right doctor who was able to finally help me with my hormone imbalance that occurred after my hysterectomy. At one of our appointments I mentioned the osteopenia and she said “your hormones are not balanced, so that’s what happens. Your bones are deteriorating.”
Once again, you could have knocked me flat with a feather. Here again was another example of a health issue that was directly linked to hormones being out of whack.
I got on the right medications, and my hormones became balanced again. When I returned for my second bone density test, I was delighted to learn that I had regained almost all of the bone in my spine (which my physician said almost never happens), and almost all of it in my hips. In fact, the radiologist checked the results three times—he just couldn’t believe what he was reading.
Finally, he looked at me and asked “what are you doing?” I replied, “Well, that’s what happens when your hormones are in balance.”
For me, getting my hormones regulated has been the key to just about everything. Have you ever had a bone density test? If so, how old were you when you first started. Have you also had your hormone levels checked? I’d love to hear from you and read what you’ve experienced!