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Progesterone/Provera Challenge?
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Ladies,
Have any of you done the Progesterone/Provera Challenge before? I had very irregular periods (or no periods) and my doctor wanted to see what my body would do in response to progesterone. When on progesterone, I started by period 2-3 days after taking the last pill. Now, my first month NOT taking the progesterone, no period. I'm a bit frustrated and concerned that something is wrong. When doing bloodwork before the progesterone challenge, my testosterone level was slightly elevated. Regardless, I anticipated (and so did my doctor) that the progesterone challenge would work as a jump start to my cycle.

Now, I'm a bit concerned. Although I do have a follow-up scheduled, I'm curious if anyone else has experience with this. Right now, we are open to pregnancy but are not actively trying to conceive (kinda hard with irregular periods anyway). That said, we (meaning I) am starting to get input/advice from family members about conception and me not being pregnant yet. (Really odd especially when it is coming from your brother-in-law.) During the last gathering I was able to shut them up with providing more information than they probably wanted but then they begin to discuss my exercise schedule. Even though my physician has said that there isn't a problem with the amount of training that I do becuase its normal for me, I'm beginning to wonder how much truth there is to these comments. I do honestly believe that its all about what is "normal" for the individual but am concerned that I may be doing something to cause the abnormal/lack of periods.

Thank you in advance for any insight or advice that you may have. I'm frustrated with the current situation and unfortunately, none of my friends have had these issues before.

(As an aside, I did search the forum for similar posts -- all are about 2 years old.)
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Re: Progesterone/Provera Challenge? [roxiegirl] [ In reply to ]
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I have done the provera challenge twice in the last couple of years and never hope to repeat it. The first time, I went close to 10 months with no period. Prior to that I had been on the nuvaring and had "monthly" cycles. I either forgot to replace the nuvaring one month (or it fell out) and thus started my 10 months with no cycles. My doctor wasn't concerned. I think I may have been more concerned than she was. I should probably say that I have never had regular cycles that weren't forced by birth control (I'm 34). As we neared close to a year with no cycles, she recommended (likely cause I kept asking her if I should be concerned) that I do a round of progesterone just to see what happened. Similar to you, I started my period 3-4 days after taking 10 days of pills. But those 10 days and the proceeding 5 were some of the most miserable PMS filled days I have ever had. Following the progesterone test, my period went away again for 8 months or so. At this point, the only concern my dr had was the fact that amenorrhea has been linked to osteoporosis which my mom and grandmother both have. So we discussed options, did some more testing and everything checked out fairly normal except my progesterone level was a bit low. My choices were take the provera every 3 months if I am not having regular cycles or consider going back on birth control. Knowing I didn't want to fill terrible for 3 weeks every 3 months, I decided to explore the birth control options and decided to go with a mirena. It would provide a low level of progestrone and hopefully have no other side effects. My second round of provera was prior to the insertion of the mirena. And just about a year later, I still have my mirena with little to no side effects.

I should mention that I am not trying to conceive. My drs methods would likely have been different if that was the case.
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Re: Progesterone/Provera Challenge? [roxiegirl] [ In reply to ]
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Roxie - I'm going through a very similar situation. Never really got a period after going off BC last Sept. Failed Provera and have since been diagnosed with Hypothalic Ammenorea (most likely what you have). It is caused by an energy deficiency (exercise too much, stressed out, don't eat enough). I've had to significantly decrease my training and gain over 10 lbs (Now 5'5" and 138). Still don't have my natural period back yet.

There a few blogs and forums that I have found very helpful:
http://noperiodbaby.blogspot.com/

http://www.fertilethoughts.com/...634.html#post7297717

Please feel free to IM me if you have any questions.

Team Danbury Audi - Triplet Mommy!!!
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Re: Progesterone/Provera Challenge? [jellyfish1] [ In reply to ]
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Jellyfish - I was just about to post those two links! Hands down, the best resource for these issues I've found.

I was diagnosed with hypothalamic amenorrhea just over a year ago, after nine months of no periods after going off the pill. At the time, I was training about 10-15 hours a week. and my BMI was on the low end of normal. Like you, I thought "but this level of activity is normal for me" and "I'm not a tiny skinny gymnast or ballet dancer - I have some spare fat!". I knew many fellow triathletes and runners who had gotten pregnant while training as much or more than I did - it just didn't seem right!

But after all my reading, research, and working with a reproductive endocrinologist, I learned that each of us has our set point - for some people, a certain amount of training or leanness is just too much to be able to have normal cycles, even if you're used to that amount of training, and don't have any other "over training" symptoms. I also learned that this point can change - maybe you had cycles at this weight/activity level in the past, but don't any more - it happens.

Did you have a full set of bloodwork done, including measuring your LH, FSH and estrogen levels? I failed the provera challenge and all of my levels were VERY VERY low. That is really the only way to get a clear diagnosis.

So - I cut WAY back on my training - to about 3-5 hours/week of gentle exercise - some swimming, some yoga, and a few <30 min runs. My doctor also had me gain 10+ lbs, which on my 5'2" body was a lot. I'm not going to lie. It was really really hard. Training was a stress-relief outlet for me, and battling infertility was pretty stressful! After a few months, my cycles started to come back - though still longer than normal. My doctor had me take clomid in addition to the lifestyle changes, and I'm happy to report that I'm 10 weeks pregnant.

Good luck! Feel free to pm me if you have any questions. I highly recommend you check out the links Jellyfish posted. There is a great support network of other active women going through the same thing who really get it.

Jesse
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Re: Progesterone/Provera Challenge? [roxiegirl] [ In reply to ]
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I have been given the provera challenge and had some questions and that has lead me to you girls, but none of you have been given the challenge for the same reasons I have. Just curious if any one out there has been on it for having to many periods? I have about 2 full periods a month(7days). I thought the provera was suppose to stop my bleeding but in stead I started my period 1 day after I started the pill and it lasted for 11 days.. Has anyone out there gone through this?
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Re: Progesterone/Provera Challenge? [Zuri] [ In reply to ]
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Zuri wrote:
I have been given the provera challenge and had some questions and that has lead me to you girls, but none of you have been given the challenge for the same reasons I have. Just curious if any one out there has been on it for having to many periods? I have about 2 full periods a month(7days). I thought the provera was suppose to stop my bleeding but in stead I started my period 1 day after I started the pill and it lasted for 11 days.. Has anyone out there gone through this?


I have been on progesterone for almost 2 years. I was having extremely heavy periods and sometimes 2 weeks apart. I actually had an ablation schedule because I was tired of getting my menstrual every time I raced. I had an abnormal biopsy and had a choice of hysterectomy or progesterone. My periods stopped immediately and I gained 7 pounds right away.
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Re: Progesterone/Provera Challenge? [jellyfish1] [ In reply to ]
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I know I'm responding to an old thread but I wanted to ask if you got your period back and if so, how?
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Re: Progesterone/Provera Challenge? [Minoo66] [ In reply to ]
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I'm on bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (bhrt) and cycle through estrogen and progesterone based on what my period would be if I were 1/2 my age. My period always comes after I begin using the progesterone cream.

If you are not getting your period with progesterone replacement, then perhaps adjusting your dosage may help.

Wag More, Bark Less
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