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Author Topic: Menstrual cycle and pain levels  (Read 3304 times)

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Offline enuff81020

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Menstrual cycle and pain levels
« on: October 20, 2002, 09:21:18 AM »
Hi!

I've read a couple of small blurbs in the paper and  magazines lately about the pain levels that a woman experiences during her time of month.  One article mentioned that this influences arthritis symptoms and the other suggested that women need a stronger dose of pain medication during part of their cycle than others.

Does anyone know anymore about this?  I've had an awful week and to my surprise, this issue came this morning, a week earlier than scheduled.  Since I am 47, I know that my body is most likely starting some new changes--and I would like to deal with any effects that this could have on my arthritis and my junky knees...  Thanks, Sylvia
Both kneesOA.
Scope on rt knee,9/00;2/01
scope w/ LR and debridement rt knee 2/02
left knee same5/02
Patellar problems
LeftTKR12/16/02
Right TKR7/14/03
Complications MUA 8/14/03
R TKR revisio

Offline Tizzy953

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Re: Menstrual cycle and pain levels
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2002, 12:47:13 AM »
Sylvia,

I don't have any answers for you, but my OS said the same thing to me.  That some women's knee problem are caused by hormone levels.  I laughed at him and he said he was serious.  I had read about this before but told him that my knees don't act differently at different times of the month.  He said he realized that and wasn't taking my hormone levels into consideration.  If he wasn't, why did he bring it up.  My "issue" was 2 weeks ago and a week after that was the first time my knee subluxed.  It has locked up once before that and didn't sublux.  Since 10 OCT my knee has locked 3 times and subluxed 3 times, the last being last night.  I think, just like everything else, it just depends on the person.

Hope this helps,
Kenzie
11/93-R ankle recon; 10/94-L ankle recon, 2/96-R shoulder stabilization+3 screws, 2/97-dislocated jaw, 11/99- LR L knee, 5/02-diagonstic scope L knee, 1/14/03- TTT+LR L knee, 9/9/03-L knee hardware removal, cartilage cleanup

Offline Shazinoz

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Re: Menstrual cycle and pain levels
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2002, 05:41:39 AM »
This is very true as one of the hormones does affect pain (my pain levels sky rocket at that time and that is why I skip and only have a period every 3-4 months, yes my GP says this is fine), also your are supposedly more likely to hurt your self and do ligament injuries and sublux during this time as one of the hormones supposedly has like a relaxing property and this can cause problems too (or so I have read, there is a thing called the triad which is to do with knees, women and periods that I saw on TV and read about) worst luck I cant remember a lot about it but it definately said that research shows that apin levels and injuries in women tend to increase around that time. Great Hey just what we all need (like a hole in the head ) :o

I found this in an article on women athletes and menstrual cycles:

Also reported in some of the literature is an increase in musculoskeletal and joint injuries during this time of the menstrual cycle. However, there is little definitive research indicating the exact causes. One theory is a relationship of increased relaxin levels and increased flexibility and elasticity of connective tissue, such as in articular joints. Relaxin is a hormone that is thought to be responsible for softening and relaxation of the ligaments in various joints. Although still poorly understood in humans, relaxin levels highly correlate with relaxing of the pubic bones allowing for birth in females of several mammal species. Relaxin is thought to create joint laxity, which allows the pelvis to accommodate the enlarging uterus. This may also weaken the ability of supports in the lumbar spine to withstand shearing forces. In the pelvis, joint laxity is most prominent in the cartilage between the two pubic bones and the sacroiliac joints.

Relaxin secretion has been shown related to ovulation, with increased levels about 6 days after LH peak. Significantly high levels were detected in women using oral contraceptives, possibly due to induced changes in relaxin secretion. Several studies associate high levels of relaxin with low back pain in women during pregnancy, and similarly high levels in non-pregnant women with posterior pelvic pain. Although there is no investigation in the role of relaxin in sports injuries in women, there may be a correlation.
and
In addition, it's possible that the ACL is considerably more lax in females than males. As it turns out, there are both oestrogen and progesterone receptors on the ACL; increases in one or both of these hormones may slacken the ACL, heightening the risk of damage (if this is really true, female athletes would tend to be at higher risk during certain stages of their menstrual cycles). It's known that a female's ligaments tend to loosen up as a result of the hormonal changes associated with pregnancy, so this theory is not too far-fetched
and
researchers are now learning that the hormonal swings during a woman's menstrual cycle affect more than just reproduction, like metabolism rates and pain.
2 ACL 'reco's', 3 'scopes', Pain, JRA, EDS, RSD, CMP, osetochondral defect & #, synovitis, adhesions, nerve damage, foot drop, MCL damage, tendonitis, fibrosis, ligament damage AGAIN, dislocations +++

Offline enuff81020

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Re: Menstrual cycle and pain levels
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2002, 08:08:02 AM »
Thanks,

This seems like some of the info that I had seen bits and pieces of.  I'm not sure how to use it, but I'm going to find a way to put it on my list for my doc...

I think it is lousy enough to be blessed with TOM, then to have it add all of this fun to the mix...Sylvia
Both kneesOA.
Scope on rt knee,9/00;2/01
scope w/ LR and debridement rt knee 2/02
left knee same5/02
Patellar problems
LeftTKR12/16/02
Right TKR7/14/03
Complications MUA 8/14/03
R TKR revisio

Offline Louise

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Re: Menstrual cycle and pain levels
« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2002, 09:24:06 PM »
I thought I was going mad each month when my knee would be more problematic during my "time of the month"!  I've  suffered with an indiagnosed but suspected torn meniscus for 10 years and every month I suffer from a great deal of pain and weakness along with increased instances of locking.  I thought it was all in my mind and that due to general pain levels being increased at that time I was just noticing the pain in my knee more.  It's good to know that there is a possible explanation behind it and I will certainly have to mention it at my next appointment.

Thank you for putting my mind at rest and letting me know I'm not going mad after all! :D

Offline Helen

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Re: Menstrual cycle and pain levels
« Reply #5 on: November 06, 2002, 11:48:19 PM »
Im there now and can definately say that the pain is worse during these times. Ive also noticed that my usual annoying monthly cramps have been worse since I had my knee op. I find this strange as chronic pain is supposed to raise the pain threshold not lower it.

My hubby says Im just weird and Im beginning to agree with him  ;D.
H
04/07/02 RL - patella tendon realignment, LR and meniscus trimmed. RSD set up home shortly afterwards....typical.

Offline Shazinoz

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Re: Menstrual cycle and pain levels
« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2002, 01:24:06 AM »
Chronic Pain does increse your pai threshold, but since your surgery have you had new meds ? and was that by any chance when you "got" your RSD ? as RSD as it sontrols the sympathetic nerves it can increase the cramps etc too. I have this problem the increased cramps and increased pain so my doc said to skip my periods and only have 1 like every 2-4 months boy does this help but when I do have my period it is ok not like having 2-4 periods just like a strong "normal" one for me.

Hope this helps
2 ACL 'reco's', 3 'scopes', Pain, JRA, EDS, RSD, CMP, osetochondral defect & #, synovitis, adhesions, nerve damage, foot drop, MCL damage, tendonitis, fibrosis, ligament damage AGAIN, dislocations +++

Iona_-Uk

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Re: Menstrual cycle and pain levels
« Reply #7 on: November 08, 2002, 11:05:37 AM »
Hi Sylvia

From a personal point of view, I have always found any tye of pain, not just knee pain, a lot worse during my menstural cycle.

I've been offered some drug treatment but am reluctant to try them, as I am having other drug treatment which have stopped my cycles ready for my op on the 19th, if after that I continue with the added pain, then I am seriously contemplating trying it.

My knees are probably the worst affected though, I get a lot of pain at the top of my thighs and this then radiates down into my knees.

Take care
Iona

Helen_uk

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Re: Menstrual cycle and pain levels
« Reply #8 on: November 08, 2002, 08:08:41 PM »
My joints dislocate far more at that time of month and my pain is worse but then I could murder the husband and put the kids up for adoption too I think everthing seems worse when you have pmt.
But its a condition that reales to collagen and is well documented.
H xxx

Offline Shazinoz

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Re: Menstrual cycle and pain levels
« Reply #9 on: November 09, 2002, 01:06:55 PM »
Helen,
I know what you mean my body goes nuts at that time, i dislocate more, sublux more and are more prone to injuries like strains , sprains and major ligament tears. As if we didn't have enough to live with without our collagen disorders going nuts on us once a month.
My Gp has actually told me to only have a period every 3-4 months (or to go as long as I can without one) to help prevent this and the terribel pain too.
I truly know where you are comming from.
2 ACL 'reco's', 3 'scopes', Pain, JRA, EDS, RSD, CMP, osetochondral defect & #, synovitis, adhesions, nerve damage, foot drop, MCL damage, tendonitis, fibrosis, ligament damage AGAIN, dislocations +++