• Photo by Danilo Ćalić

My Personal Menopause Journey by Dr Verity Biggs

Our Women’s Health Lead and Menopause Specialist, Dr Verity Biggs, shares her own challenging menopause journey to help other women that may be struggling with undiagnosed symptoms.

Dr Verity Biggs
Dr Verity BiggsWomen's Health and Menopause Lead

Dr Verity Biggs is a Women’s health specialist and our female health lead.

You can find out more about Dr Biggs by viewing her latest articles and biography .

Where it began – the undiagnosed symptoms of menopause

Around the age of 35, I felt tired, I ached, I had no energy and I gained weight.

Around this time, I had surgery to remove part of my Thyroid due to a lump (all benign thankfully).  I presumed that a lot of my symptoms were down to my thyroid hormone changes and a busy NHS job and being mum to 4-year-old identical twin girls and juggling work and home life.

My confidence was low, and I felt old and creaky and scared that if I felt this bad now, then how would I feel in my 60’s, 70’s etc.

Further investigations – a complex picture

I saw a Rheumatologist and an Endocrinologist, Chronic Fatigue was suggested and Fibromyalgia and Hypermobile Joint Syndrome, but something kept telling me it was my hormones.  I had blood tests after blood tests, and my Oestrogen levels were low, but contraceptive hormones were blamed.

The breakthrough – trialling HRT

For 3 more years I battled on, and finally began a trial of HRT at the age of 38.  HRT isn’t a miracle cure for all of life’s ailments, but slowly I began to feel like me again.

I began to feel more normal and likely how someone my age should feel like, who knows what “normal” is though!

Gradually I noticed that I didn’t have as much hip and nerve pain and could sleep better as a result.  I felt I had more energy and motivation to do more and be more active, I started walking more and began to lose weight.  It took a good year or so to feel more balanced again.

A further health setback – a total hysterectomy

Unfortunately, due to bleeding problems and adenomyosis, I had a total hysterectomy at the age of 41.  This was a big decision and was not taken lightly, and a lot of different options had been tried, but it was the right decision for me.

Having my ovaries removed, meant I was thrown fully into menopause, a surgical menopause, as any remaining function from my ovaries, was removed.  My hormones have dipped and varied, and may still take some time to be more balanced again, but I have not regretted this decision.

So, what’s the moral of my story?

Listen to your instincts, get help, and get investigated.  There can be so many other reasons for your symptoms, or medical causes – so listen to your body.

If in doubt seek help with a specialist GP who can give you the time to listen to your story, piece it all together and explain is what is needed.

What to do if you’re suffering, or relate to something you’ve read here?

If you’d like to speak to a specialist about your symptoms or any other aspect of menopause or your general health then book an appointment now with our menopause team, led by Dr Verity Biggs, here. Our consultations can be face to face or online, whichever’s more convenient for you.