Old 11-06-2017, 10:30 AM #1 (permalink)
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Default Preparing for OB-GYN visit, advice needed

Hi,

I have not been to the ob-gyn in more than 6 years. Before that I had not been to one in 10 years! I've been through a number of different trauma's involving that part of my body, and going to the ob-gyn is something I've simply avoided, mostly due to the anxiety. I guess it is also easy when you know you will never have kids, are not sexually active, and most of the time don't really care or worry about serious illnesses (my daily depressive moods don't help)

However, besides being very anxious, I also have experienced significant pain each time.

All these years, I assumed that was normal, until now...I have to see the specialist soon (my periods have never been this bad, I have pain throughout the month, with lots of unexpected cramping) and reading online that a pelvic exam is not supposed to hurt shocked me. (You are supposed to only feel a little bit of pressure???)

The last specialist made me think that way as well, because I told her it was hurting and burning, even screamed at some point from the pain (which is very rare for me, believe me it hurt more than all my piercings and tattoos together), she did not say anything, she did not comfort me in any way or ask me any further questions. When I told her about my very painful periods, she looked at me like 'hello, we women are supposed to suffer' and said it was normal. (?!?!)

So my questions are;

- what is your experience at the ob-gyn office?

- does a pelvic exam hurt you as well? Which part? (for me the ultrasound was the worst) Is there any way to make it less painful?

- can the pain be related to fibro?

Thanks!
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Old 11-06-2017, 11:04 AM #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Preparing for OB-GYN visit, advice needed

It's cold.

And it's always hurts for me. Since I'm strongly allergic to latex, I always need to be very cautious with every thing that they use beside the gloves cause it burn me very very badly every single times. Soomtime the latex residue from the latex glove might get around too. The burn sensation normally last with me for days!

Although I used to it now cause pains and cramps are what to be expected after. I still have to bring them my own lidicaine lubricant for them to use if necessary. Cause sometime their own lube irritates me badly later. If they don't carry non latex gloves I'll bring my own.

The day after I'm like an wounded animal. I have relying on more lidicaine gel, benadryl cream, and preparation H suppository or cream to keep the burn sensation down .
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Old 11-06-2017, 11:39 AM #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Preparing for OB-GYN visit, advice needed

I'm not really in a position to answer this one terribly well vicky because as you know i have bad pain down there pretty much all the time and have IC and vulvodynia which is basically pain internally and externally in that whole region. You can google and see if either apply to any of your experiences.

These are both conditions often associated with fibro.

Prior to fibro only a smear test hurt me a lot...but that area like the rest of us has muscles tendons ligaments and skin so can flare up on its own or by any kind of touch or invasion...pressure ....prodding.

You can ask for non latex gloves as a precaution against latex allergy i believe.

Just ask them to go very gently and slow whatever they do....and sit and explain first not only your concerns but that fibro means you need them to be aware you may hurt more than the normal patients and to take that into account.

Might be a good idea to take a pain killer before you go and maybe a muscle relaxer or anti anxiety pill too if possible....anything to make the whole process a bit easier on you.

good luck
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Old 11-06-2017, 02:36 PM #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Preparing for OB-GYN visit, advice needed

It did just occur to me i wonder if your fibro is causing the pelvic pain through out the month and worse during your period.

I once joined a fibro support group when i was first unwell. There was a lady who's main symptom was pelvic pain and after several years of looking for the cause and finding nothing it was this that led her gyny to diagnose her fibro .
I'm sure she must have had other body pain symptoms but i think they were milder ..it just suddenly jumped into my head with this thread that it was her main one.

Not sure if that helps or not....but maybe a bit like IBS is often alongside fibro ... pretty much any part of us can be affected.

I had absolutely no signs of vulvodynia or interstial cystitis when i first got fibro...no pelvic pain. Then bam one day about 2 years in I woke up with what i assumed was a UTI.

I had never had one my whole life but assumed it must be from the symptoms..I also had a bloated stomach and a feeling like my insides would fall out and were bearing down and heavy.

It only lasted 3 days and i thought oh thank goodness...it must have been a UTI my body had cleared itself.

Then 10 months later it came back and lasted over 3 months ....roll on 7 years and its a daily problem.

So maybe your pelvic pain is similar fibro related that's crept up on you...but of course maybe not.

I hope you have a really experienced gyny who understands how different a fibro body is and can ascertain the cause and offer something to ease the cramps.
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Old 11-06-2017, 02:37 PM #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Preparing for OB-GYN visit, advice needed

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Might be a good idea to take a pain killer before you go and maybe a muscle relaxer or anti anxiety pill too if possible....anything to make the whole process a bit easier on you.
Oh believe me, I will be taking all the meds I can take. I am starting to have nightmares and non-stop panic attacks about it even though I have not even booked an appointment. I find it so so so horrible.

I also have to get in the mindset of 'if the doctor is not making me feel comfortable, I will either leave or put up with it (and get it over with, because I really fear I'll never find the courage to ever go back) but make it clear to the doctor what she did wrong and even file a complaint'. Doctors need to know how to treat women, women in their most vulnerable position (literally and figuratively!!!)

Sorry you guys suffer so much. This is so unfair....

I was diagnosed with severe vaginismus in my early 20's after an operation for a imperforate hymen. I discovered this when my first ever boyfriend could not 'rape' me. (this is another event I had to come into terms with over the years. It was very traumatizing as you can imagine, he left me behind completely naked, hurt and in pain, saying things like 'you can't even be a whore''. I was in love for the first time in my life....) I felt so unwomanly, so awful, I was also still wetting the bed every night at the time. (sorry if this is all too much info)

With the help of my amazing GP, I decided to take control over my body. Through books, self help articles and relaxation methods, I let my body heal from the vaginismus in 2 years. So I know I still have to relax relax relax even now. But it is the long lasting burning that is especially worrying me. I am also suspecting something like vulvadynia because the burning is all over the place.

I had actually not thought about the latex gloves - that might indeed be part of the cause of the burning. I'll definitely try to find non-latex gloves.

Thanks for the tips and the great advice.
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Old 11-06-2017, 04:05 PM #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Preparing for OB-GYN visit, advice needed

oh vicky you have been through so much...what a terrible trauma. I know the burning ... this is the pain that drives me into the ground pretty much on daily basis.

I would also be scared to go to see a gyny now....if mine ever settles it can flare up just by gently washing ..even warm water can set it off in seconds....crazy body!

Im upset myself about the experience you speak of....so terrible when you also love and trust someone. How can there be such cruel people put on this planet...how do people live with themselves.

No wonder our bodies go haywire....the human mind is only meant to take normal levels of stress and definitely not repeat traumas...rejections and critisms that go to the core of who we are.
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Old 11-06-2017, 06:41 PM #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Preparing for OB-GYN visit, advice needed

Vicky my heart goes out to you, sweet girl! You are so 'there' for others and I can't really help you get through this except for a few bits of info from my experiences over the years.

I'm quite a bit older than you but that's not to say my reproductive years weren't a nightmare! At the time I thought heavy and painful periods were 'normal' because mine were but they were really traumatic. I spent many trips to the ob-gyn but apart from enormous shame and embarrassment, I didn't have any pain with examinations.

My first sexual experiences were "family friends" who took a great interest in me from the age of sixteen. They took advantage of me and I thought I was in love! It horrifies me now that I wasn't able to tell these creeps to stop. It also set me up for a life of never trusting men, married or not. So many horrible things happen to young girls that they can't talk about. I really feel for you so much.

After some years of not having sex I had a very painful and failed attempt with a man one night and I now believe that was an episode of vaginismus. The reason for it? I suppose, my fear? It has never happened again and I've managed to have a happy, healthy sex life until menopause.....and then it was all down hill!! I now get a different kind of excruciating pain, I think from very little activity in that area and fragile old skin. To have penetration of any kind when you're not used to it regularly is very painful.

-So, what I'm thinking is.....relaxation before your visit is the key, as you said.

-A painkiller might make it easier but you also run the risk of masking tender areas that the dr is trying to check. Maybe a muscle relaxant?

-Do your yoga before you go and a relaxation meditation. Close your eyes and breathe during the examination and dream of little pussy cats.

-I agree, the ultrasound is awful so only have it if it's imperative. You should ask to do the initial insertion yourself.....they offered for me to.

-Non-latex gloves are very common these days and a good idea.

Try hard to take your mind elsewhere, Vicky. It most probably will not be as bad as you expected this time. Let's hope. Good luck!
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Old 11-07-2017, 03:32 AM #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Preparing for OB-GYN visit, advice needed

I had many bad sexual encountered in my life since I was 9 years old.

My parents were missionary or on businessed elsewhere other parts of country or other parts if the world , I stayed in private bording school through all my childhood and through high school . So home stayed with volunteers strangers during school holidays or weekend was the programs that school selected for me. Sadly some volenteerers can be more than I bargain for.

Then when I was 14-15 during holiday stayed with my best friend , her brother took me by surprised with his friends. After the incident my best friend ended up bought me a train ticket to go hide in down south with her uncle to let the commotion subside. Then another incident when her uncle found out the story , to insured my slient and other future problems with his nephew another incident happen with more men involved and I was in hospital after suspected an early miscarriage . Thank god I blacked out most of it do to blood lost. I recovered and back to normal in only a few month. I was lucky that I did have strong mind blocked stress when I was younger. Maybe the first incident when I was 9 made me a different person. More easier to accepting the unlucky situations perhaps, and possibly corrupted my head somehow since I don't feel angry by it I just don't know how. Yet I never tell my patents any of these ever, never was and never will.

The pains still present it self from times to time but I got used to it and I was very healthy after. Yet after my marridge later in life my parent want me to have kids, I was so scare if getting pregnant or child birth so I went donated my eggs instead so my mom woulld feel like I didn't failed live as a woman. Sadly my tramatic drama with my mom cancer/ her passed/ my divorced happen while I was donating my eggs and everything had gone completelt wrong. That's the start of the real horror events ( just the start) and then fibro, So my lady parts are well... not very happy with me I guess

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Old 11-07-2017, 03:38 AM #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Preparing for OB-GYN visit, advice needed

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My first sexual experiences were "family friends" who took a great interest in me from the age of sixteen. They took advantage of me and I thought I was in love! It horrifies me now that I wasn't able to tell these creeps to stop. It also set me up for a life of never trusting men, married or not. So many horrible things happen to young girls that they can't talk about. I really feel for you so much.

After some years of not having sex I had a very painful and failed attempt with a man one night and I now believe that was an episode of vaginismus. The reason for it? I suppose, my fear? It has never happened again and I've managed to have a happy, healthy sex life until menopause.....and then it was all down hill!!
It really saddened me to read what you went through at the young age of 16 - I really feel for you.

We, women, suffer a lot, don't we? I mean the whole #metoo movement is just the tip of the iceberg.

The act itself is one thing, but its effects on so many of us lasting a lifetime. I also have never been able to trust men. Then I see or hear about amazing men and have some hope, but then they are all taken LOL!!!!

Surely men have their own problems, it is often about their 'performance' (or lack of), but while I was fighting vaginismus, it frustrated me so much that there was a lot of information and help for men, but none for women. Internet was in its infant years, I am glad women now have more resources now and these topics are being talked about.

And many thanks for the great tips, I was also double thinking the painkiller option. Mainly because if I cut out the pain and numb myself, then the ob-gyn and I might not really know how much pain is involved, and therefore might also not be able to solve it. But then I am like, it is an area I don't touch, it will never be touched, so why solve the pain issue (pain at penetration)?

Then I am like 'don't be so hopeless, you can still fall in love, be intimate with the right person etc.?', but I know how unlikely that is...ahhh....why is this so painful in so many ways?
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