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Should I take Loestrin to stop menstrual bleeding?

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Practicing since : 2005
Answered : 3163 Questions
Hello. I am 45yo, 5'10" 195lb woman with diet controlled diabetes (no meds, tho. A1C is up to 6.5 from 6.2 last fall). I am on day 20 of my period, which has been extremely heavy and showing no signs of stopping. I have had blood work showing anemia and also had a pelvic ultrasound showing uterine fibroids. Loestrin was recommended to get my bleeding stopped. I am wondering how safe it is as a 45yo non-smoking woman that has lumpy breasts and 2 previous (benign) needle biopsies from concerns from mammograms. I am researching right now trying to make sure that loestrin is the right thing for me to do. Thank you for any advice you can share.
Posted Tue, 17 Apr 2012 in Menstruation and Miscarriage
Answered by Dr. Rhea Chanda 1 hour later

Thanks for the query.

Well, if you are having fibroids, then the type and size of the fibroids are important in deciding treatment. The bleeding is due to the fibroids and I am sure you are aware of it.

After reading your history, I would not advice estrogen containing pills to stop the bleeding. Fibroids are estrogen dependant tumors and grow with high estrogen levels in the body. Loestrin is combined birth control pill (contains estrongen and progesterone analogues). Moreover, I also do not suggest use of combined BC pill after 35 yrs of age.

Instead, only protestogen pills can be used to stop the bleeding. Even hemostatic drugs may be used to stop bleeding alternatively. You also need to be aware that now, if you choose to stop the pill, recurrence of bleeding can occur. Discuss with your gynecologist and appropriately plan the next step of treatment.

Usually upon achieving menopause, fibroids often shrink and bleeding is controlled. If there are multiple fibroids,or a large, surgical treatment would be a better choice of treatment.

Do start iron supplements as well and increase iron in your diet.

Hope my answers are adequate and informative. I am available to clarify any other concerns, should you have any.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Should I take Loestrin to stop menstrual bleeding? 1 hour later
Thank you, Dr. XXXXXXX I appreciate your reply. Yes, I am aware the fibroids are causing the bleeding and that hormones cause fibroid growth and that with menopause they shrink and most likely disappear all together, but obviously with non-stop bleeding, I need to do something now. I am concerned about BC pills, as well. So you are saying there are other meds to take to help stop the bleeding? Progesterone? Was a protestogen a spellling error or is that the name of the med?

I have not started any loestrin or other meds just yet, I am trying to get my thoughts in order before I speak further with my doctor, so I can best plan my course of treatment along with my doctor's advice.

I've been researching surgery options as well. However, the size of my firboids are so small (4 of them, the largest only 1.9cm)! I guess it's the location of them that matters more than size because those little suckers are causing a heap of bleeding! I do not at this time know the location.

So do you think it is best to take one of the meds you are suggesting first to get the bleeding stopped and maybe buy some time before considering any type of surgery (ablation, myomectomy, etc.)? I realize you don't know me and need more info, maybe, and I take your suggestions as only suggestions, but I do really appreciate your time in conversing with me about this.

Appreciatively, XXXXXXX
Answered by Dr. Rhea Chanda 14 minutes later

Thanks again for writing back to me.

Well,the hormone progesterone/progestin is the same group of drug useful in this conditions. Its used in controlling menorrhagia. Its an alternative to combined OC pills.

Yes,your fibroids are quite small and you can use medication to control the bleeding while you consider surgical options. Other drugs like 'tranexemic acid' etc cause hemostasis and can also be used. But upon stopping the drugs,the bleeding may recur after some time.

I suggest that you speak with your doctor about these possibilities.

About the type of surgery you may require it depends on several factors like age, parity, etc. Myomectomy or hysterectomy are the usual surgeries done.

Loestrin is a low dose estrogen pill. Most doctors don't believe in giving estrogen therapy in treating fibroid; but some do. You have plenty of time to make a informed decision as to treating fibroid as a whole; but now, you need to take some action to reduce the bleeding asap.

Hope I have answered your query.

Wish you good health

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Should I take Loestrin to stop menstrual bleeding? 3 hours later
One last question regarding fibrocystic breasts/history of 2 needle biopsies (benign) and the use of loestrin and/or progesterone/progestin in possibly treating my menorrhagia...any concerns there that I should be aware of?

Again, thank you so very much for your time. I very much appreciated all you have said to help me make the best decision for my health. I will certainly be following up with my physicians soon. Thank you for all you do.
Answered by Dr. Rhea Chanda 5 hours later
Well,progestins do have side effects like breast tenderness,enlargement,weight changes,bloating, etc.Severe allergic reaction may occur and if it does,seek medical attention immediately.Progestins are contraindicated if you are a heavy smokers,with history of stroke,dvt,pulmonary embolism etc.
Progestins are not for long term use so please consult your doctor about a permanent solution.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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