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    Post-menopausal bleeding
    theycallthewindmariah posted:
    I'm 56, and thought I was well over Menopause since I haven't had a period in over 5 years, and haven't had any night sweats or other symptoms in a longer time... I never took hormones during "the change", except for "all natural" OTC drugs, since I had a pretty easy time of it, and so never NEEDED artificial hormones...
    In the last 9 months, however, I'm suddenly REGULARLY experiencing MONTHLY cramps and vaginal bleeding (though very light, I'm also passing small clots)! What is going on? (remember I'm 56!!!)
    The only thing that is different in my life is that I've been taking "natural" sleep aids for the last year that contain the same herbs and plant extracts that I took during Menopause. Is there a correlation here?
    Mary Jane Minkin, MD responded:
    Dear theycallthewindmariah, (another excellent paint your wagon fan!),
    I'm not sure what's going on, but it does need to be investigated. It could be that some of these herbal products are acting like plant estrogens, and could be stimulating the lining of the uterus. To fully investigate, I'd do an ultrasound of the pelvis, checking out the lining of the uterus, and the ovaries (to see if they look active, too); and I'd get an FSH and estradiol level (to see if it looks like there is some estrogenic activity.) I would think those tests would give a good idea of what's happening.
    And another possibility is to stop the products you are currently using, and see if the bleeding resolves-but I'd do some investigating first-
    Good luck,
    Mary Jane
    theycallthewindmariah replied to Mary Jane Minkin, MD's response:
    Thank you so much, doctor! That was EXACTLY what the problem was... I stopped using the herbal sleep aids and the cramping/bleeding stopped, too!

    Sorry it took me so long to reply to your answer: I'd totally forgotten that I'd asked about this! (I had "put it together" on my own when I checked the ingredients against the menopause aids I'd used years before)

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    For more information, visit the North American Menopause Society website