You’ve had bloodwork done and your doctor says everything is fine. Yet you still don’t have a regular period. What’s going on?
Dr. Jennifer Guadiani looks into the nuances of what “fine” might mean, and what other factors may be causing you to have amenorrhea.
Read the transcript
[Tina] I did all the blood work; I took all the tests; everything looks fine. My GP says everything’s okay. What’s wrong with me?
[Jen] Presuming that we’re talking about still not having a regular period, I think that that can be really difficult to know. It could be that “fine” meant your estradiol level was 60. It wasn’t less than 50, but it was not fulsomely high and normal, so I think sometimes that requires further referral.
Maybe there’s something else going on, and we don’t want to assume that it’s just one thing. So maybe we need further referral to an expert gynecologist or to an endocrinologist. Then again, if your estradiol level was just squeaking over that margin, and in your wisest of hearts, you know that you’ve had some combination of training, maybe not quite adequate enough fueling, maybe really stressful life events. My goodness, people during Covid in particular have had so many stressful life events, that all of those are conspiring in their brain to say, “Not a safe time; let’s just not have a period.” So really thinking about, “Is there anything that I might have missed? Do I need to see a different specialist?” and then also, “How is my holistic care? How is my heart? How is my soul? How am I doing? What are the ways in which I can care for myself more tenderly, in order to preserve my health in the immediate and in the long term?”
[Tina] Thank you so much; so important.
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Recovering from RED-S is hard. It’s even harder if you’re working through it alone. Even if you have professional support, they’re not available 24-7, and that can lead to going down search engine rabbit holes that have the potential to derail everything.
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more about Dr G:
Dr. Jennifer Gaudiani, CEDS-S, FAED, is an internist who specializes in eating disorders. She practices from a deeply anti-diet, weight-inclusive perspective and partners with therapists and dietitians around the country to ameliorate medical roadblocks in patients’ recovery journeys. Her book, “Sick Enough: A Guide to the Medical Complications of Eating Disorders,” is for patients, families, and practitioners. You can find Jen at https://gaudianiclinic.com