Author Topic: Sjogren's and estrogen  (Read 2788 times)

Nans

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Sjogren's and estrogen
« on: October 24, 2009, 09:25:22 AM »
Hi again,

I have another thought.  Given the fact that Sjogren's Syndrome affects far more women than men (90%), and, if I'm not mistaken, more women are affected by other AI diseases also, is there a link to estrogen?
Then again, I believe that in the majority of cases, SjS develops in the mid-40's to mid-50's - when most women go through menopause (and therefore have dropping estrogen levels).  Hmmm.  Any thoughts?

Nancy

ohiolady

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Re: Sjogren's and estrogen
« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2009, 09:41:48 AM »
I've wondered the same thing, Nans.  I had a hysterectomy when I was 36 and have taken estrogen since then and I am now 54.  My Sjogrens started when I seemingly was going thru menopause again at the age of 51.  Though I was taking hormones, I was still having menopausal symptoms.  Don't you wonder why they can't come to a better understanding of autoimmune illnesses.  My opthamologist said he thinks they know more about what they don't know about AI's than what they know.  I think he may be right.

Anna
SJS  Hashimoto's   Mild Raynauds  GERD  Gastroparesis
Restasis, Evoxac, Dexilant,  Domperidone, Zofran and Synthroid. Fish Oil, Vit D and B12  R lipoic acid,  Acetyl L Cartnine, Vitamin B1, and The Perfect Food Green and Fruit supplement

Kidney Cancer Survivor   
Female   Age: 58

MusicismyLife19

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Re: Sjogren's and estrogen
« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2009, 10:30:58 AM »
Hi Nancy,

I was really intrigued by your post, and you bring up a very interesting thought.  I am 24, and when the severe symptoms of Sjogren's first hit me I was 23. 

Let's just think about this theoretically for a moment: you mentioned how Sjogren's seems to develop more frequently in women around the ages of mid 40s to mid 50s.  Around menopause, and around the time when the hormone levels in our bodies are changing.  Well, what if this disease has some trigger response to a person's body if someone's hormone level has been significantly dropped?  It would make sense how even a four year old, a 13 year old, or even someone my age would develop Sjogren's because our bodies are going through different stages of change.  If our bodies aren't receiving the proper care, like getting the right exercise or the right nutrients, our bodies have to compensate.  We are more susceptible to outside forces like AI diseases.

Anyway, I just thought this was a very interesting and thought provoking idea you mentioned, and it really made me think.  Thank you for sharing. : )

BeckyG

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Re: Sjogren's and estrogen
« Reply #3 on: October 24, 2009, 11:10:41 AM »
I have wondered the same thing.  My worst symptoms appeared in august of this year... a week after they put me on clomied (sp?) for fertility.  I am one of those woman who's periods come when they please sometimes as far as six months apart! Though I have been having the dry eyes/mouth and finger/toe pain for years it was never severe enough for me to worry.  Its only recently that things have flared to the point that they did the all the tests and i tested positive in ana's and ssa.  My Rhumey told me he didn't think my fertility problems had anything to do with ss, but who knows? They really don't seem to know allot.  It prolly doesn't help either that my vitamin D levels are rock bottom! Yeah for hiding from the sunshine!  I know that my estrogen levels are not what they are suppose to be in a 28 year old woman, but whether its what brought out ss or has been caused because of ss i dunno if I'll ever get any real answer.

~elizabeth~

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Re: Sjogren's and estrogen
« Reply #4 on: October 24, 2009, 02:46:32 PM »
I was really intrigued by your post, and you bring up a very interesting thought.  I am 24, and when the severe symptoms of Sjogren's first hit me I was 23. 

Let's just think about this theoretically for a moment: you mentioned how Sjogren's seems to develop more frequently in women around the ages of mid 40s to mid 50s.  Around menopause, and around the time when the hormone levels in our bodies are changing.  Well, what if this disease has some trigger response to a person's body if someone's hormone level has been significantly dropped?  It would make sense how even a four year old, a 13 year old, or even someone my age would develop Sjogren's because our bodies are going through different stages of change.  If our bodies aren't receiving the proper care, like getting the right exercise or the right nutrients, our bodies have to compensate.  We are more susceptible to outside forces like AI diseases.

Interesting question. Whatever I have started in my late teens, and flared up really badly when I was about 20. Whether the initial problem was SjS or thyroiditis, or one causing the other I'll probably never find out. I'm sure they do have a significant effect on the immune system but the relationship between hormones and different parts of the immune system is quite complex. I think one of the reason SjS tend to get diagnosed at around the age of the menopause is partly because the body's secretion do get drier as we age, as hormone levels fall; combined with dryness in glands that have been gradually failing for years without diagnosis suddenly make the condition appear suddenly acute.

I had ongoing gynaecological problems from my teens until I was diagnosed with an under-active thyroid at around the age of 30. Taking thyroxine replacement seemed to cure them virtually overnight, but the dryness/joint pain/muscle aching/brain fog haven't resolved. The main thing that seems to trigger flares are viral infections in my case. There's a lot of autoimmune disease in my family, which probably affects both males and females almost equally, but the division seems to be that boys develop Type 1 diabetes fairly early in life, and women/girls thyroiditis and other conditions a bit later on.

dunhams

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Re: Sjogren's and estrogen
« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2009, 04:23:09 PM »
I had an hysterectomy at 39 & starated have problems at 51. I was on estragen all that time. After having a blood clot  I was taken off estragen 3 yrs ago. Mayo Clinic did a lip byopsy & said it was Sjogrens at the age of 53.

Maria3667

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Re: Sjogren's and estrogen
« Reply #6 on: October 25, 2009, 06:43:33 PM »
Hello Nancy,

The question has also come to my mind often. It's been debated on this board often too.

Whenever I tried supplementing with estrogen, my dryness issues markedly improved.

But like some women here say, eventhough taking HRT they still got Sjogren's. On the other hand, plenty of women in menopause with dropping estrogen levels DON'T have Sjogrens...... So I think some other factor(s) must be involved.

Maria
46, F. Lyme's Disease (1998), Primary Sjogren's & hypothyroidism (2003), DES-daughter, anxiety disorder.
Seroquel, pilocarpine, thyroid hormones, supplements, testosterone.
Dry mouth - dry eyes - dry skin - cherry hemangiomas - macules - uterine fibroids. Allergies: nickle, methylisothiazolinone

Nans

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Re: Sjogren's and estrogen
« Reply #7 on: October 26, 2009, 07:14:43 AM »
>>>On the other hand, plenty of women in menopause with dropping estrogen levels DON'T have Sjogrens...... So I think some other factor(s) must be involved.<<<

Oh, for sure.  It just seems that estrogen would be an obvious factor since the numbers are so severely skewed towards women.

gurs

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Re: Sjogren's and estrogen
« Reply #8 on: October 26, 2009, 07:50:08 AM »
Ever since my total hyster 3 years ago, my sjogrens/lupus got 99% worse. Trying to tolerate any form of estrogen has been the biggest issue for me, the side effects.  It seems to have made my raynauds super bad...not sure why? estrogen is supposed to help with blood flow, but not indicated for lupus or vascular disease?
Ive read so many articles and went to a few top hormone specialist, and they all tell me something different. Some say estrogen can aggravate sjogrens, as well as not
having a enough, Im guessing prob the inbalance. I also find it odd that taking estrogen can cause dry eyes?  It has been a nightmare trying to figure this out.

DUNHAMS....did you feel better after stopping the estrogen? just wondering?

My sjogrens started at puberty...go figure...I also find it very strange that many menopausal women are diganosed with fibro? i think that is all hormone issues as well..just my opinion.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2009, 07:51:46 AM by gurs »
50 years old.Primary SS, Lupus, Raynauds, POTS, Hormone issues from Hyster-menopause, systemic candida,osteoporosis,Gastroparesis, chronic neuropathy, migraines, sinus/dental issues. selective immune def/low t-cells.
Prednisone & medrol , plaquenil, diflucan, bio-estrogen creams,many supplements

Nans

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Re: Sjogren's and estrogen
« Reply #9 on: October 26, 2009, 12:50:19 PM »
My husband sent me the link to an interesting article about SjS today.  It mentioned estrogen:

>Patients with Sj?gren's show significant defects in T cell immunity (Gerli R 1989). Japanese researchers found that estrogen deficiency contributes to this dysfunctional T cell response (Ishimaru N et al 1999).

Sj?gren's syndrome has also been linked to estrogen deficiencies in menopausal women (Hayashi Y et al 2004). While no human studies have been conducted on the value of estrogen restoration therapy among Sj?gren's patients, Life Extension believes that women over 35 should have a complete hormone profile performed and correct any hormonal deficiencies. Women with hormone-dependent cancers, however, are generally advised against hormone restoration with estrogen.<

If you would like to read the entire article, here's the link:

http://www.lef.org/protocols/immune_connective_joint/sjogren_syndrome_01.htm#

gurs

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Re: Sjogren's and estrogen
« Reply #10 on: October 26, 2009, 01:03:49 PM »
Funny, I have extremely low t-cells..I like Life Extension. They have alot of really good health articles, especially on hormones (function)
50 years old.Primary SS, Lupus, Raynauds, POTS, Hormone issues from Hyster-menopause, systemic candida,osteoporosis,Gastroparesis, chronic neuropathy, migraines, sinus/dental issues. selective immune def/low t-cells.
Prednisone & medrol , plaquenil, diflucan, bio-estrogen creams,many supplements

babycakes

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Re: Sjogren's and estrogen
« Reply #11 on: October 26, 2009, 02:52:16 PM »
hi nans

this is a really interesting thread.  I was diagnosed with sjogrens after the birth of my first baby 2 years ago.  My story basically, i had irregular periods for years and was told i had a lazy ovary.  My hormone levels (estrogen) were found to be low years go (in my 20's when they finally did tests) and to conceive my son i also took  clomid (to stimulate the ovaries to produce more eggs).  Well i did conceive but my problems started after my son was born and i had a massive flare.  Oddly enough now i am on plaquinil i have nearly normal cycle for the first time since starting my periods at 13.  Maybe being estrogen deficient for all those years lead to sjogrens??? Who knows. 


babycakes

ohiolady

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Re: Sjogren's and estrogen
« Reply #12 on: October 26, 2009, 02:56:29 PM »
Babycakes,

That is very interesting since I had my hysterectomy at age 36 and the amount of estrogen they replaced my ovaries with was much lower than it normally would have been.  If we think this way, why can't researchers find answers?

Anna
SJS  Hashimoto's   Mild Raynauds  GERD  Gastroparesis
Restasis, Evoxac, Dexilant,  Domperidone, Zofran and Synthroid. Fish Oil, Vit D and B12  R lipoic acid,  Acetyl L Cartnine, Vitamin B1, and The Perfect Food Green and Fruit supplement

Kidney Cancer Survivor   
Female   Age: 58

susanep

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Re: Sjogren's and estrogen
« Reply #13 on: October 26, 2009, 03:27:19 PM »
I will add what I can to this. I am now 56. I have still not gone through menopause. I told my regular gp, I thought I was. She did a blood test to show my hormone levels and says I am not in menopause yet.  :o

I have had  problems all  my life with periods. As a teenager I would get this really bad outbreak of acne, and sometimes would have to get an antibiotic for it until my period passed. Even today at 56 have acne outbreaks during that time. :(

In my latter teens and early twenties I had irregular periods all the time. One every 4 months.

In my early 30's seen an endocrinologist who said I was hypothyroid, and after being on medication for a while my periods became nice and regular. I also suffered bad clinical depression probably due to the low thyroid problem.

Now my periods come when they want to and are very scanty, even though I am regularly tested for my thyroid and take my meds. I think I need more progesterone, and was given extra for 3 months once, and it helped.

For years I had dry eyes. Didn't know it. Just knew my mom would always comment that every time I came to see her I was rubbing my eyes.

About 5 or 6 years ago now, I just know it's like a truck ran over me, and I struggled to get out of bed. Was having what I first thought was pneumonia, but one doctor said it's not pneumonia , but your lungs are dry, and that is keeping you from breathing. Suddenly I itched all the time. Pains here and there. My skin hurt, my eyes hurt, my bones hurt moving around to different places. My teeth started going bad fast. Never knew what constipation was, or out of the blue diarrhea. Never use to have the memory problems like now. I no longer could walk long enough to exercise like I use to, therefore the weight started piling on, etc, etc,.

I don't know anymore than when I started responding here , but hope it means something. ;D

susanep :)
Sjogren's, Lupus, Hypothyroid, Fibro, Sleep Apnea, diabetes, asthma, Polycystic ovaries, and Gerd. Meds - Pilocarpine, Synthroid, Effexor, Cpap, aspirin, Prilosec, Neurontin, Xanax, eye Drops, vitamin D3, Plaquenil, Gabapentin, Provigil , Advair, Proventil- Retired Teacher/Disabled

sboller

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Re: Sjogren's and estrogen
« Reply #14 on: October 26, 2009, 05:07:49 PM »
Hello,

Has anyone ever tried Bio-Indentical hormones?  I was just reading about them and all the symptoms hormone imbalances can cause.  It looks like unbalanced hormones causes many symptoms of fibromyalgia.  I tend to wonder if a person were to have their hormones balanced if the Sjogrens symptoms would reduce.  I found a franchise called BodyLogic that does all the testing for you and will make bio idenical hormone for each individual by using a compound pharmacy.  Please let me know if anyone has tried anything at all like this.  I am considering trying it, but the intitial costs are a little spendy.

Best Regards,
Sheri