My Time On Spironolactone

My Time On Spironolactone

Treating PCOS is really tough. Everyone is different so what works for some might not work for others. The treatments include various types of birth control, Metformin, diet changes, medications that help ovulation, Spironolactone and losing weight if overweight or obese.

When I was in my early 20s, I was put on Spironolactone to help with my PCOS symptoms. Here is how it went.

What is Spironolactone?

Image result for Spironolactone
Taken from http://www.webmd.com

Spironolactone is a diuretic most commonly used to treat heart problems, high blood pressure and low potassium (see here: https://www.drugs.com/spironolactone.html) It is also used to treat PCOS related symptoms which include acne, hair loss and excess male-pattern hair growth. This is due in part to its ability to lower androgen levels.

The dosages women are usually given are in the range of 50-200 mg per day. There are a lot of side effects that one can experience. These include weight gain, low energy, muscle loss, headaches, nausea/vomiting, itchy skin, dehydration and aggravation of PCOS symptoms ( see here: https://pcos.com/spironolactone/ ).

My Experience with it

I started taking Spironolactone when I was 21 years old with the goal of controlling my acne and oiliness. It was worse at that time than it is now. I also had mild hirsutism (it is worse now).

My dosage started out at 25 mg. We decided on this dose because I am really sensitive to medications. The maximum dosage for me was going to be 50 mg.

The first couple weeks at 25 mg, I noticed no side effects. Some women lose water weight at first but since I never weigh myself due to past eating disorder issues, I did not notice any.

Since it is potassium-sparing, I had to watch my diet to make sure I was not consuming a lot of foods that contained potassium in them (i.e. bananas). I also had to go in for blood tests to get the potassium level checked.

It does take around three months to notice differences in your skin so I was told not to get my hopes up for instant results. After tolerating 25 mg, I moved up to 50 mg. This was when I started to experience side effects.

The first thing I noticed was that my strength for weight lifting really went down. I went from being able to bench press 150 pounds to only being able to bench press 75 pounds. Also, I would black out sometimes when trying to push ups.

I also experienced some pelvic pain at times. It was sharp and caused me to double over. Even still, I kept taking the medication. I was really hoping that these side effects might go away and it would start working for me.

After three months on the medication, I can honestly say that I did not notice much of anything positive from it. The only thing that I guess got a little better was the oiliness of my skin. It was still pretty bad at times though.

My acne actually got worse on it. Little pimples showed up in the mustache area and I would regularly get two huge cysts on both sides of my nose. It was embarrassing to say the least. The pock marks by my nose are daily reminders of what I had to deal with.

I decided to stop taking it shortly after having a horrible breakout on my cheeks. It was so bad and took about six weeks to clear up. There was no reason to continue taking the medication anymore.

Do I recommend it despite my experience?

My experience is my own. There are a lot of people who have had great success when on Spironolactone. With that said, I would recommend it for someone who has PCOS or just bad acne.

It could work for someone else and be the key to fixing their problems. It is not good of me to sit here and say that since it did not help me at all, it won’t help others.

Have any of you been on this medication?

Excess Hair (PCOS Sucks!) and Gua Sha Treatment

Excess Hair (PCOS Sucks!) and Gua Sha Treatment

The Ferriman-Gallwey scale for the measure of hirsutismIllustration: Mona Chalabi

So I have talked about not having much hair on my eyebrows. The annoying thing is that with PCOS, I have too much hair in areas where I do not want it. This is a common issue that women with this diagnosis deal with.

My facial hair showed up when I was about 14 years old and it has been a problem ever since. It makes me self conscious because I feel so manly. I hate it but I try to think that things could be a lot worse for me.

In this society, being hairless is seen as feminine. This is especially true for the male pattern hair growth that many of us with PCOS have. It is not supposed to be there at all according to whoever.

My facial hair first showed up as a mustache which I would get waxed regularly. In my 20s I started getting some random neck hairs along with it. This was not really a big deal as I would pluck them and they would not grow back for a while.

Unfortunately, it has gotten worse these days.  I get small amounts of hair on my chin, mustache area and neck. These get shaved off every morning and then by around 6:00 PM, they sprout up again. It is so crazy to me that they grow back so fast!

Laser hair removal seems really expensive to me right now and plus I have heard a lot of negative things about having it done. So I guess for now I will keep shaving daily. I just needed to vent because I was feeling annoyed during my latest shaving session. Here is the facial shaver I use: https://www.amazon.com/Removal-Laxcare-Painless-Perfect-Waterproof/dp/B075R1XQWT/ref=sr_1_3?crid=V89H2QRJO6GU&keywords=laxcare+facial+hair+removal&qid=1555991168&s=gateway&sprefix=laxcare%2Caps%2C185&sr=8-3

Gua Sha Treatment

Image result for gua sha tools

I decided to hop on the fad train and try the Gua Sha treatment for my face. I bought a jade tool like the one pictured above. It was only about $9.00 on Amazon.

The reason why I wanted to try this is because I am always looking for things that can improve my skin and not be too expensive. Doing the Gua Sha treatment also seemed pretty easy from what I saw on YouTube.

I went into it not expecting much from it because after all, it is just a piece of stone. So far I have done one treatment and I can honestly say that I see a difference in my face. It is like it is more “plumped” or something. I can not explain very well but it does look better. My mother even commented on it.

I would highly recommend for others to purchase one of these stones and try this treatment method. There are quite of few videos on it that tell/show you how to do it. I think I will be doing it 4-5 times a week in the evenings. I hope I get even better results over time.

Has anyone reading this tried it? Did you get any good results?

Thanks for reading!