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EndocrineWeb Community Advice

Too Young for menopause..

From: el2001 - 10 years 30 weeks ago

I am a 39 year old woman.I have had my whole thyroid gland removed 3 months ago after being diagnosed with papillary cancer and then had the radioactive iodine pill treatment . Since then I am now cancer free and taking thyroxin of 150g a day and all my TSH,T4 and calcium are normal.
Unfortunately a month ago I started having awful hot flushes every half hour that even wake me up during my sleep and very intense migrains,hazy eyeside,neck and back pains as well as a bit of weight gain and lots of mood swings. Two weeks ago I had my blood tests that showed my FSH is 110 (normal is between 5-10) ,which could easily be for a 75 year old woman. I have missed my first period and its a shock to me as I was always very regular and normal with that.
It seems I am now in menopause and I am not sure what to do or what to take as I believe I am too young to start taking HRT from now ,but the worst part is I havent got any children, and if I ever decide to have any i will never be able to. If anyone out there has any advice or a similar story and can help in anyway please let me know.
I am seeing a holistic doctor next week to hopefully go on a natural kind of HRT(bio-identical), that will most probably help me.
My GP is hoping that my periods will come back and this is just a shock to my system after the iodine treatment.
Any advice will be much appreciated .

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6 Responses

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Hi there ~

I just read your post. I notice it posted about 4 months ago & no one has commented. I certainly hope, for your sake, you have acquired some answers & perhaps have already rectified this issue.

After a little research to back up my original thought, the symptoms you described are symptoms seen in women who are taking too high a dose of thyroxine. Of course, those symptoms also line up with menopause; however, I do not believe you have suddenly plummeted into menopause.

Because of the removal of your thyroid & all that went along with it, it is not a surprise your hormones are completely out of whack. And though, I do not think you have entered menopause, you are 39, and have likely experienced a few differences over the last couple years making you hyper-aware of your changing reproductive system.

I am also 39, and every few months, I manage to convince myself I have certainly begun my journey down the perimenopausal trail. Personally, I have given up on trying to figure it all out by dissecting every subtle change in my body. However, that is my story, not yours. The extreme changes you described would definitely have anyone believing menopause has surely begun. Based on the information you provided, I feel confident you have not begun menopause, but, at the time you posted this query, likely your body was reacting to the thyroxine and/or there is an additional physiological issue transpiring that has manifested as a result of the removal of your thyroid or is not related at all, but simply revealing itself at this time.

I hope this finds you well & what I wrote is totally superfluous because you are completely hormonally balanced and free from those horrific symptoms. I am interested to hear what conclusions the medical professionals have come to regarding this issue & what exactly caused your FSH levels to go through the roof, as well as, the cause of the symptoms you describe.

I certainly hope you are not still suffering in any way. However, if you respond and explain what has gone on, how you are currently feeling, I will definitely explore other avenues to help find an answer for you.

Congratulations on being cancer free. Stay healthy.


Is this good advice?

Last fall I had a total thyroidectomy for thyroid cancer at age 46 and I got bumped into premature menopause; it's not at all uncommon according to my endocrinologist...just type thyroidectomy and menopause into your google search box and you will get all kinds of affirmation on that. From what I understand the fluctuations of the thyroid hormones can bring this wonderful phenomenon to occur in some lucky persons like us. I see that this post occurred a while ago so hopefully they have gotten you back on track by now. (I just had my radioactive iodine 3 weeks ago even tho I had my thyroid out in October, because I'd had a CT that had used iodine in it way last summer, so I had to wait months for it to clear out of my system so that the radioactive iodine would be effective, long story, point is, i still don't know if my situation will normalize in that regard)

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After my aunt had her first iodine treatment she missed her period for 3 months, and like yourself, hers was always like clockwork. Since then, she has become regulated again, but only after her second round of treatment. Her endo said it was definitely from the shock of undergoing the treatment. Be very careful of what you take (holistic or not) along with whatever medicines you are currently on, as many factors affect the way thyroid meds are absorbed. For example, to take it too close to a birth control dose can affect the birth control's effectiveness, whereas taking it too close to a reflux medication can actually cause the levoxyl to be absorbed by the antacid. It's crazy! One thing that should help is calcium supplements with added vitamin D (such as caltrate D)...that can affect mood, hair, nails, achiness and fatigue. Good luck and good health!

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I have read many books in regards to radioactive iodine on the system. There are cases in which women do have early menopause from the RAI treatment(s).

I would like to know how you are doing now.


Is this good advice?

Hello, I just saw this post and would love if you would write back to let me know how everything panned out. Your story sounds like mine, I had my thyroid out in August due to papillary thyroid cancer, had RAI in November. I had my regular period at the end of November, a very light one in December, spotting in January, nothing in February. I thought I was getting too much thyroid meds as I feel like I'm bouncing off the walls. Went to my dr, my TSH is .02 (which is low) but he tested me for FSH which was 111! And estrogen wich was 5! These are numbers that are out if the range of someone who is in menopause. Now I am 47 but have always been fairly regular and no menopause symptoms. My sister is 53 and still gets her period and my mother got hers into her late 50s.

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Wow I'm curious how these things work out for everyone because I'm in a similar place. I don't want children so I'm ok with that, I believe I am female by accident but was never meant to be a mother. In another era I might have been a nun. Anyway, I had Hashi's and some other chronic autoimmune disease stuff. Ended up with stage two cancer so the thyroid is gone. Great relief after much suffering, but now I think I'm beginning menopause and I'm only 35. I'm more concerned about doctors believing me and whether it makes any other symptoms of disease worse.

I am two years out from surgery so I don't think this is caused by radiation.

But I wonder if these kinds of diseases can kick off menopause early.

On the other hand almost ALL of the women in my family went through menopause before 40.

I can't help but feel like the two are related though. 35 is young, and I'm afraid the doctor won't even be willing to test me.