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Reduced shed on Metformin?

Discussion in 'PCOS Community' started by mjh, Jul 17, 2008.

  1. dying curls

    dying curls Guest

    Kim, ive look up your regimen y ou are already on flutamide i see...i dont think metformin would make a difference with your hair then...what met does is that by regulating the insulin, the androgen are kept in range. bt if you already are on an antoandrogen then it wont affect your hair much...Also met is useful for pcos girls have you pcos?if yes then met could be useful for other things.
  2. kimm

    kimm Guest

    hi dying curls -

    The reason I want to try metformin is because I've read studies that suggest it can help your ovaries stop producing so much testosterone. The study I read was also looking at normal weight non insulin resistant women.

    I've been on flutamide but my androgens rose anyway (just had a baby so my hormones are still changing). I've read conflicting reports on whether or not flutamide just blocks or can also reduce testosterone levels.

    I think I need something else to help get them down further though. Birth control pills started my hair loss cycle 8 years ago, but I may need to try yaz or yasmin I guess, and I tried spironolactone but it never stopped my shedding and once going off I got a lot of regrowth that continued to grow in very thick after I got pregnant. So I don't know if that's worth trying again or now.

    It's tough because I see so much conflicting information with Metformin. I've even heard women say that their androgens went up on it (not saying met caused it) I've also read about hair loss occuring on it.

    It's all so confusing......
  3. HMH

    HMH Guest


    How did you know that you had PCOS? I don't think I have any of the symptoms but you said you did not have the wt. gain either. Is you hair loss just from the PCOS or have you had a diagnoses of Androgenetic Alopecia. Just want to make sure I am not missing any other causes for increased loss that I could treat. I have Androgenetic Alopecia.
  4. kimm

    kimm Guest

    hi there -

    My diagnosis was base on high androgens as well as the physical symptoms (hairloss unwanted hair growth). It wasn't until after I had my second baby that I ever had an ultrasound of my ovaries and then they discovered the "cysts"

    I'm normal weight (have struggled in past though) and usually have normal cycles (they've gotten weird lately but I think it's stress related)

    My mom and sister also have pcos. My mom has the weight problem and my sister is thin but also has cysts on her ovaries and I think higher androgens.

    It's a complex syndrome.
  5. mjh

    mjh Guest

    hi Kimm!

    I do think my shed is still down but I haven't really had any regrowth...unfortunately.

    pcos sucks! :(
  6. dying curls

    dying curls Guest

    yeah symptoms and reaction to the different treatments can vary a lot from a woman to another.
    many women are asymptomatic (and dont "really" need to be treated, as in pcos its more the symptoms than the cause that are treated)what counts to make a diagnosis more than symptoms is an ultrasoudn and blood sample results.
  7. april k

    april k Guest

    I totally think that the fact that you've had some improvement with Metformin, that you should look into insulin resistance, since that is what the drug is meant to treat. It can help your body become more sensitive to the insulin that you make (which could be a bit high for you since your body makes more when it's not recognized properly).

    Someone mentioned soulcysters.com as a good website to check out. A few other good ones are insulitelabs.com (the deal specifically with insulin resistance including PCOS, being overweight, pre-diabetes and metabolic syndrome) as well as http://www.pcosupport.org/ which is specifically for PCOS.

    Nice news, hope your good fortune continues.

    April K.
  8. april k

    april k Guest

    This is April K again, I just noticed that you mentioned your insulin being borderline high. The normal range is so wide for insulin. Some people say that a fasting insulin should be 9 or below....so....I assume that you've way overshot 9?

    April K

    VANESA Guest

    Even if you test Normal high end you should be on met..
    especially if you have other insulin resistant symtpoms..

    Putting weight on around stomach waist - cant seem to lose it no matter if you diet or exercise (this is due to high insulin levels)
    tired after high GI carb meals
    ANs - darker marks around groin and neck

    and all the other symptoms of PCOs., hairloss , extra hair, chin , lip etc
  10. mjh

    mjh Guest

    I don't know exactly how high my insulin was...i didn't see the labs. My nurse called and told me it was borderline and my doctor is a PCOS expert so I trust her.
    I have lost a lot of weight since being on Met....and i've also been eating a lot less than before. My acne has improved as well. I hope it helps me get pregnant...
  11. alicat

    alicat Guest

    that is so great to hear!

    my hubby and i are going to my endo end of sept to talk about us ttc!!!!! that would mean i have to go off of diane 35 and maybe on met? i have heard miscarriages are so common with pcos ladies :(

    please don't feel you have to answer, but i don't know anyone else to ask, but---how long have you been ttc? i would be so sad if it takes me a long time.
  12. kimm

    kimm Guest

    mjh -

    That's great to hear the shed is still down! Are you monitering your Testosterone levels while on it? I'm curious about it's ability to lower these levels on it's own.

    Alicat - I've heard the same thing about met. Just so you know though, I have pcos and didn't have any trouble conceiving or carrying to term. It's good to be proactive, I just wanted you to know it won't necessarily be hard because you have this. I know I got lucky in this regard. My sis on the other hand is having trouble getting pregnant. She did manage to have two girls though. She's just had to work for the last one and the one she's trying to have now. Good Luck!

    I've actually purchased the bottle of Fortamet. Have b12 supps that I've been taking and have a calcium supp that I'm waiting on till I start the met.

    I went to an endo this week. The one that prescribed it, and he was not as encouraging as I hoped.

    Me: " so has this improved T levels in non insulin resistant pcos girls?"

    Him: "well that's hard to measure since womens' levels are so low"

    Me: "how about improved symptoms?"

    Him: "no"

    Me: "have any of your patients complained of hairloss on this?"

    HIm: "no"

    Me Thinking: So why did you want me to take this again?

    I'm afraid to make things worse because I do have hair growing back now. Not sure if it's just recovering from the shed or if it's the flutamide finally working.

    I also don't know that flutamide on it's own will be enough to stop progression. I have an endo apt at U of M next month so maybe they'll know more. Not sure I want to wait that long to do anything though!

    I just started acupuncture (for the depression mainly) and the woman I'm seeing thinks I should wait because I'm still coming down after a bad run in with Armour. Apparently it didn't agree with me because I'm still trying to come down from just one week on it.

    so in the meantime I've added spearmint tea and d-chiro-inositol, and nac. Hopefully those might have some effect in helping to lower the androgens a tad while I figure this out!
  13. alicat

    alicat Guest

    thank you kimm!!

    my mom and sis conceive real easily, so i am hoping i'll have the same luck. they don't have pcos, but i am hoping for some of their luck!!
  14. kaylee

    kaylee Guest

    My gyno said it would be hard for me to concieve because I dont ovulate every month AND I have scar tissue buildup. But I didn't know about that misscariage thing! Sounds like kids may not be in my future. :(
  15. alicat

    alicat Guest

    I just read somewhere that any woman can miscarry, but with PCOS it's more common. A lot of women on the Soul Cysters forum finally conceived and went to term thanks to Met!

    I probably don't ovulate. Before Diane 35 my periods were all over the place!
  16. kaylee

    kaylee Guest

    Yea my periods were insane too!! I cant take Met, Im way too thin as it is. It just sucks cuz I have two things that could keep me from having babies :(
  17. mjh

    mjh Guest

    Well, I had been ttc before Met but it's been about three or four months since taking Met now. I haven't been checking my ovulation time and all that though. I have always had a regular period...my mom had trouble conceiving too. I think she had PCOS too but she never had any hair loss.

    I haven't been monitering my T levels because my health insurance sucks and I limit my doctor visits. But it must be down because my acne has improved quite a bit. it was never really bad but it was consistent.
  18. alicat

    alicat Guest


    It can take upwards of a year even for a "normal" woman trying to conceive.

    I hope it happens!!!

    Met should help to keep your hormones in check, right? I hope so 'cause when I come off of Diane I don't want my hormones to go all freaky on me.
  19. kimm

    kimm Guest

    april -

    I think you can still go on met if you end up feeling like it will help. My sis is a rail and she's on it right now. You just need to make sure you're eating right.

    I'm waiting to see if I have my period in about a week here. The week before I get wicked pms and don't want to try introducing a new med then. I did that with the armour and I think that played a roll in how badly I reacted to it. For the first time in my life I don't need to lose weight either so once I go on I'll let you know if it has an effect in that direction.

    Alicat - I think, if you do have pcos the met is supposed to help with the insulin part of the equation and thereby help it from messing with your ovaries (very scientific explanation, right? :mrgreen: ) that being said, you'll probably need to be patient after going off you bcp. Your body will need time to adjust. I would however think about not waiting to try after going off, because I've heard that even women who have trouble ovulating normally will sometimes ovualate the first few cycles off the bcp they were on.

    MJH - That's great to hear that you're having some reduction in symptoms (shedding, acne) that gives me some hope that this is what I need to do. I'm finally noticing regrowth, but I lost so much that I'm concerned that if I don't get my T levels down, I might not be giving myself the best chance at the density I need.

    The wierd thing is, even though I'm seeing regrowth (looks like about a quarter in of my hairline is trying to come back, a mix of pigmented and vellous hair) my facial hair seems to be the same or a tad worse. That's telling me I need to get my androgens lower. Also considering talking my docs into letting me up my flutamide dosage. Afraid to do it on my own only because It'll eventually catch on that I'm having to renew my prescription too soon! I need to get someone on my side who doesn't have a problem with a slightly higher dosage.

    Sorry for all the novels!
  20. kaylee

    kaylee Guest

    I could take met but I don't see how it would benefit me? Im thin, No IR or pre-diabetes etc. And blood sugar is already pretty low.
    My mom takes it for her diabetes and shes says shes lost a ton of weight on it!

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