Menopause joint pains


I had stage 3 CC in 2019 and as I’m only 33 I was pushed into early menopause, I’ve not suffered with menopause symptoms apart from hot flushes but I’ve dealt with them well. I decided not to take HRT as I was worried about side affects. I’m now starting to wonder did I do the right thing?!

I have started getting really bad back ache, my bones just feel weak overall. I get achy off a bit of walking etc. does anyone else experience this if your not on HRT? Xx

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What does your GP say? Please do talk about it. Perhaps you need to start taking calcium supplements, for example - but there can be a lot of consequences of the drop in oestrogen. It could well be menopause related. Such a shame that ladies have to deal with this along with cancer treatment. I hope you can get some advice. X

I havent spoken to my GP yet I was just going to try and manage it myself. What are the consequences?

I think if you’re having menopausal symptoms and new aches and pains it’s always a good idea to talk to your GP. You’re only young, but menopause has a lot of different effects on the body. It’s a good idea to talk it over, even if you don’t want to take HRT.

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:raised_back_of_hand: Me! Only I’m on HRT maybe 5 ish weeks now.

I stiffen up if I sit/stand in 1 spot for too long, then when I walk…well… my hubby says I look like I’ve shat myself… :woozy_face:
I also feel it in my knees and when its extreme my hands - esp my thumb joints - and my shoulders. I’ve tried to get a hold of my GP and she’s tried to get a hold of me but with work and kids it’s been tricky.
I will try again this week to get her!
Also I have put on weight and that could be a major factor as well as becoming unfit. I’m working hard to reverse both those by healthy eating and keeping moving in work and walks when I can.

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I do hope you can get hold of your GP soon. You do need to talk to someone about menopause. Unfortunately weight gain is another consequence of menopause as well. The stiffness sounds horrible. I’ve had knee pains and stiff sore joints in my hands for years with menopause. Happily for me this is resolving as I think the radiotherapy has finally got my body to accept that I am no longer going to need my mothering resources…. Hormones are funny things.

I was diagnosed with cc in 2019 too, finished treatment August 2019. I went a year without HRT. Definitely felt the stiff joints, still do but the Hrt does help some. I was 33 when diagnosed, I wish they would have put me on hrt right away instead of waiting that year, my last scan showed osteopenia in my back. I will definitely be asking my doctor about taking some calcium vitamin d supplement as well, if your nervous about Hrt I definitely would recommend taking a supplement for your bones


Hi Leanne, I’m sorry you went through this. I was diagnosed with 1B2 and had surgery including removal of ovaries in October 2020 (age 41). This obviously put me in early menopause. My oncologist advised me to remove my ovaries but he also said he wouldn’t recommend it if I wasn’t going to go on HRT, because of my age. I’ve done a lot of my own research and most women are more at risk from serious health issues by not taking HRT than taking it. This is especially true in the case of early and surgical menopause. HRT helps reduce the increased risks of oesteoporsis, dementia, heart disease and other diseases, as well as symptoms of depression and mental health issues. I’m on oestrogen patches and testosterone replacement (the ovaries actually produce 3 times the amount of testosterone to oestrogen and losing this can also cause symptoms). Surgical menopause is not the same as natural menopause as hormones are removed straight away, not reduced over time. Did you know the ovaries still produce levels of hormones 20 years after natural menopause? so it’s really not the same thing. I’d encourage you to do your own research on HRT as most GPS don’t actually receive any training in this area and there is a massive knowledge gap and lack of support for women. I’ve had to get specialist advice as my GPs are out of their depth and can’t advise me, especially on testosterone which is a complicated area. I encourage you to check out Dr Louise Newson (the Menopause Doctor) for sound advice, you can follow her on Instagram. She also has an app and a lot of information on her website which is a game changer for women. By signing up to the app it asks for your specific situation and directs you to relevant accurate research driven information (there’s a lot of inaccurate information out there). Get as educated as you can and ask your GP for a referral to a specialist menopause clinic. As I said, the risks of not taking HRT far outweigh the risks of taking it and it’s important you make an informed decision with the latest knowledge. I really hope that helps. I’m always happy to share my experience if it does. Take care. Ash xx

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Hi everyone. I completed chemo rads last year and as result was plunged into early menopause. I started with hot flushes and then started on a HRT called tibolone in October. It’s helped the hot flushes but what I’m now getting is extreme joint pain. Namely in my wrists, knees shoulders and hands. My thumbs bizarrely seem the worst affected. What I want to find out is which HRT people have been prescribed and what the different experiences are. I have a feeling that tibolone is prob the cheapest one hence reason I’ve been put on it. When I mentioned the joint pain at my last 3 month check up they booked me in for a dexa bone scan which I’ll be having in April. I feel like I’ve aged rapidly and my fitness levels have really been affected. I was previously very active but now feel as though every time I try to go for a run it’s a huge effort and results in more aches and pains. It’s really getting me down. I do feel as though nobody really takes menopause very seriously. :weary::weary::weary:

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Hi @AeronaW!

Im only new to the menpause thing - only 12 weeks post treatment.
Theres a post above yours by @AshCloud and she gives great advice and a link to a fab site with some great info xxx

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Hi Aerona. I feel your frustration! It’s very difficult to get the right support, that’s why I’m sharing my experience so others don’t have the battles I had.

I was also recommended Tibolone initially because of the complications around testosterone replacement for women (there isn’t a licensed product available on the NHS for women) Tibolone doesn’t contain testosterone but it does have androgenic properties, apparently.

Having done some research I told my oncologist I didn’t want Tibolone because I have a history of migraine and Tibolone has increased risks of blood clots for me. I pushed for testosterone replacement alongside the oestrogen patches (Estradot) that I was already on (transdermal is far more natural than tablet form by the way and doesn’t come with the risk of clots to migraine sufferers). It’s worth knowing that NICE guidelines recommend that women that could benefit from testosterone replacement should be offered it off label, meaning a male dose is adapted for female use. My oncologist was very helpful and sent the NICE guidelines to my GP and asked them to prescribe it.

I’ve since had it confirmed by menopause specialists that I’ve gone down the right route as “Tibolone doesn’t really work in your situation”.

I suggest discussing moving onto Estradot patches and Testogel testosterone replacement, which “show good results” according to a specialist at Imperial College.

In terms of what dose of patches, I was put on 50 after surgery later increased to 75, later 100 and now on 125. I’ve recently been told I should never have been on anything less than 100 because of my age and premature surgical menopause. So it’s worth discussing dosage if anyone is reading this on patches and still feeling awful.

I hope that helps. Please see my earlier post for further information sources.

Ash x

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My joint pains have gotten quite bad now. Hips,hands and knees are the worst. My gp may be barking up the wrong tree but she thinks ive arthritis. Ine of the main reasons being my mum was diagnosed 2 years younger than I am. Blood tests ect to find out. I also never realised that groin pain is an indicator for arthritic hip!

I wish that there was a sad face response to posts as well as the ‘heart’. If it is arthritis, it may have been triggered by the radiotherapy? What a bummer. The pains you are experiencing certain do not sound normal for someone in menopause. Are they continuous or only on weight bearing? Is there any redness or inflammation? I hope your GP can get a proper referral so you can get answers to this problem and they can find a way forward. :cry:

Hi @Jacks133 , well they said my Mums was stress induced. My Dad had a heart attack a few months before and an attempt was made on his life - he was a policeman in Northern Ireland it was during the troubles. Ive been stressed obviously recently. Mums progressed extremely quickly. The GP has asked for my MRI pictures to be sent to Rhumatology in our local hospital as she doesnt want me to have any more scans than needed given how much ive had recently. She really feels it is Arthritis. I have reduced reflexs in my knees and ankles which is another sign.
Do you know what though, im remaining positive. If thats all that i have to deal with in the future I’ll take it head on. My mum has been living with it for 30+ years.
Yes its unfortunate. But there are many worse off.
My hands, knees, ankles all feel puffy and get very stiff and sore 1st thing in the morning and at the end of the day. My knuckles look different. When I clench my fist they look very nobbly and white in colour.
My hip hurts in my groin i feel it hurt down my thigh and into my shin bone.

Its ok! I’ll deal with it. Im a tough bird… mostly :wink:

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