Girl Talk: Living with PCOS #03

by - Wednesday, July 15, 2015

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Me again! So following on from my previous Girl Talk posts (1: Link and 2: Link) I was waiting for the results from my recent tests and I had attended an appointment in May 2015 with my gynaecologist. This was a follow up appointment so thankfully for me – no prodding or blood tests etc! Woohoo. The gynaecologist asked how I have been and what my symptoms have been like, I started to tell him that not much had changed, I was still in large amounts of pain when I had my periods every few months, I still found it really painful when having sex and my tummy still ballooned up to the size of a house every now and again. He re-discussed my symptoms and that it isn’t normal that I have some of the symptoms that I do, following the ultrasound he found that I have a lot more cysts on my ovaries then when I was younger and he began to explain what this means, as I had never actually been told before.

Basically, when you ovulate your eggs are released from your ovaries, and travel to near your womb, the tissue builds up and each month is broken away which means you have your period. For someone with PCOS your ovaries are not released properly and they stay in or on your ovaries and build up as cysts (the unhatched egg) the odd few still carry on as normal and are broken away when you have a period, except this isn’t as often as a female without PCOS, periods are usually every 2-3 months and can be as few as one per year which as you can imagine, can be a lot more painful as there is more to break away. My gynaecologist also told me when the photos were taken inside of my ovaries and my womb they noticed that there was tissue build up/damage which is known as Endometriosis.

We then discussed what this means for me in terms of my health. I wasn’t really prepared for what was said, but I was told that due to my eggs not releasing properly this means I have a high chance that I can’t have children and it would be difficult to even  go through IVF. I also have a blood deficiency which means that I have a higher risk of losing a baby during pregnancy as my womb may not carry the baby properly so usually injections would be needed throughout my pregnancy to try and support me, however it also means that I have a higher risk of having a miscarriage or pre-eclampsia (which sadly happened to my mum with the same condition) on top of this also having Endometriosis this means that the possibility of me getting pregnant naturally is far in few.

The gynaecologist said that having Endometriosis wasn’t 100% confirmed as the only way to confirm this is by having a Laparoscopy which is minor surgery which is where you will be put to sleep (general anaesthetic) and will have a small incision near your tummy button and one near your pelvic bone, through one of the incisions air will be pumped in to blow up your tummy and then a small camera will be inserted to take in depth photos of your womb, ovaries, cervix and other parts, through the other incision a small rod with a laser beam (or similar) will be inserted and if possible the surgeon will remove any of the Endometriosis cells, the surgeons are usually really good that they will try and take away as much as they can within the same operation to save you having to repeat the process. My gynaecologist also decided to drop another bomb shell by telling me to prepare for the worst, that if the operation wasn’t successful or the damage was too significant that the only other option may be to have a full hysterectomy - what a pleasant way to start your Friday! 

I feel a little weird for saying this as I found it strange myself, but I got so upset at this point and left the hospital, sat in my car and started crying for no reason whatsoever. All that was running through my mind was that I had just turned 25 and even though I had put myself of having children, that was my decision and I felt that now I had little or no chance of having children if I wanted to. We always knew that having a baby would be difficult as my partner has a really low chance of having a baby as his condition (CF) means he has like a 2% chance he can have children naturally, and with my family history of problems on top, but we always thought there would be a chance when we were ready. 

We were already prepared to go through IVF and we had found out about the potential risks and the process of trying but we knew it was possible. Now, being told at 25 that in fact you may never be able to have children and that you would have to have major surgery that would affect you for the rest of your life, and that a chance to even have a baby or go through IVF may not even be an option as your female reproductive system may be taken away, by the Doctors recommendations really upset me. I didn’t think having a baby mattered to me, I know I am not ready to have children now - because let's face it, I have only just got used to looking after myself - but it was my decision and I have always thought that a few years after we get married and have travelled etc, we could then look to try if the time was right. But now, the biggest thought going through my head was, how can I tell Maz? How am I going to tell my fiancé who is absolutely amazing with children and I know who wants them at some point, that we actually may not even be able to have children? What a complete pain in the ovaries!

After all these thoughts running through my mind, all I had to do was wait for my appointment as my gynaecologist had referred me to the hospital for a Laparoscopy. Oh, and making sure I spoke to Maz, as even though nothing was set in stone, there still has been a huge change and this is something that needed to be discussed with us both. After all, it does affect him too and there is a decision for him to make.

Luckily for me, Maz is pretty amazing as that weekend we had a sit down and had a long emotional chat about everything (okay it was mainly me who was emotionally as I was worried how this would turn out) but we managed to go through all the procedures, diagnosis, the ifs and the buts and he continued to comfort me and say, no matter what we will be okay and we will sort something. I think it's because of his condition, but he always has a positive attitude and doesn't like to worry about things unless it actually happens - whereas I am the complete opposite. He just told me to wait until I had been for the Laparoscopy, to stop stressing or panicking about something that hasn't actually happened and to wait for the results before we find out what they need to do. Isn't he a darling!

Now all I had to do was wait... My next post will be about how my Laparoscopy went, and the results of what happened. If you have or are experiencing similar to the above, and want to speak to someone then feel free to email me or private message me on twitter @xcewblog as I am more than happy to discuss this with you.

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