T Nation

Female with Hormone Issues


#1

I posted this in the female forum as well so sorry for double posting but i thought maybe y'all could help too.

I am currently training an (25yr old)athlete who is going through hell with birth control/hormones. She was placed on it a little over a year ago (not forcefully placed but wanted to start taking it) and since then her endocrine system has been an emotional rollercoaster. Mainly she gets 2 periods a month about 2 weeks apart. Once symptoms started I looked at her BC and noticed that the dosage was very high (in my opinion too high) and suggested she ask to lower the dose. The hesitant OBGYN brought her down slowly but she is still suffering from problems of high E(dosage still too high in my opinion). She was a pretty good athlete before with probably higher T to E ratio. Now she seems to be suffering from high E issues. She also, probably 4-5 months ago, developed a bengin lump in her breast (an issue usually related to an estrogen imbalance.) I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions or advice? Also I did have her do blood work (of course its not on me) and I can post that too if it helps?
Thank you so much.


#2

Some women do not work well with progestins.

Short periods and spotting are often a direct results of progesterone levels that are too low.

Estrogen dominance probably a factor in the lump. Estrogen needs to be balanced with progesterone.

She can try adding OTC 2% progesterone cream, but problems may persist.

Oral BC inhibits the HPOA, then the ovaries are lest active, which means less T. And her progesterone production is then also low. So she effectively replaces progesterone with progestins.

Note that oral estrogens have a first liver effect, and the E peaks seen by the liver are high, SHBG increases and FT goes down.

Blood work is a problem as levels change vastly over her cycle. And some women have much different levels.


#3

Thanks KS. from your post and the other responses I am reading most ppl are against BC because of its hormone manipulation. I think overall opinion is to not take this method of birth control. I am going to suggest she look into other methods which may help her stay away from preggers without screwing up any other part of the system.


#4

yes BC can cause a number of problems (as my wife could attest to)

blood tests are usually the best place to start:
Estradiol
Progesterone
TSH
Cortisol (with an 8am blood draw)
Total Testosterone
SHBG
D25-OH
ferritin