When Ellie Waters was 14 years old, she was diagnosed with a soft tissue cancer that required intensive and lengthy treatment. The interventions saved her life, but they also stopped her ovaries working for good. With little menopause information or support from her medical team, Ellie found herself on a journey of self-discovery and empowerment.
In this episode, Ellie talks to Dr Newson about her story, what it was like going through the menopause at such a young age and how finding the right treatment has turned her life around.
In her own words, "At first, I was elated at the prospect of no periods, but as time went on, I realised that the menopause is much more than your periods stopping; I realised that it meant a life of suffering with night sweats, joint pain, vaginal atrophy and hot flushes. During a time when I was meant to be happy that I survived cancer, my mental health was spiralling with the burden of the menopause. But, thankfully, I got an appointment with Dr Newson and I am now receiving the HRT that I need. Before, I felt like I was 18 going on 80, but now I feel like superwoman!"
Ellie's Three Take Home Tips:
- You are entitled to be referred to a menopause specialist, even on the NHS. Your doctor, surgeon or endocrinologist may not have sufficient information for you.
- Empower yourself with information - you know yourself and your symptoms the best so be your own advocate when it comes to healthcare professionals.
- Entering relationships as a younger woman going through menopause can be difficult. Make sure you know your own worth and see yourself as a whole. You are more than your menopause.