Nothing too exciting, just some stuff I’ve been meaning to post.
Surgery is still on for December 9, 2013. I have paid for laser hair removal, but been dragging my feet about scheduling it because it will NOT be fun. The surgery fundraiser continues to get more exciting rewards, and has already broken $1,500. Huzzah!
Slightly more significant, health-wise, I’m going off progesterone, something I’ve been on since I started transitioning. All the information I’ve found online has said there is as much anecdotal evidence against progesterone use as for. The main argument for is that it (supposedly) increases breast growth. The main arguments against are that it doesn’t actually impact breast growth and has potentially negative physical and mental/emotional side effects. Here’s a web forum discussion about it, here’s an article written by a doctor arguing against its use with trans women, and here’s a scholarly article which basically concludes “we’re not sure.”
I’ve been on 100mg/day since late 2007, and have certainly been happy with my breast growth. (I wish I had a smaller ribcage, so I could have some real cleavage, but I’m happy with my actual boobs.) My current doctor Dr. Cook (warning: horrible 1990s style Flash website), said that A) he doesn’t think progesterone helps with breast growth to begin with and B) even if it does, going off of it won’t cause my breasts to shrink. He also feels strongly that progesterone can contribute to depression, something I’ve certainly struggled with. So, with all that in mind, I’m about three days off of progesterone. No noticeable mood improvement (or boob loss), but I’ll keep both in mind and post here if I notice major changes.
Also got back a check on my hormone levels. My libido (ahem) has been a little out of control lately. I’m not complaining, but since it’s a change over the last six months – and I was going to the doctor anyway – I wanted to get my hormone levels checked. Turns out they’re all within normal ranges. In particular, my testosterone levels are 33. Which means….what, exactly?
Well, it was difficult to figure that out. It’s incredibly easy to find typical testosterone levels for men. A Google search on that query returns tons of links with actual numbers and age brackets. A similar search for women yields pages that talk about testosterone levels, but very few with actual numbers and age brackets. WebMD, for example, has an article titled “Normal testosterone and estrogen levels in women.” Seems promising, yes? No. It contains no actual information on what “normal” is. Ultimately, the web consensus seems to be that “normal” for a pre-menopausal woman is between 15 and 80, so my level of 33 is fine.
Last (but certainly not least) my STD screening (or is it STI?) came back clean. Woo!