Hi, my name is Anna and I was on the depo shot back in 2014, until the middle of 2015. I had given birth in January of 2014, and it was recommended that I get on birth control for awhile before having another child. I tend to have issues with pills at times and I had read the patch could cause blood clots, so I decided on depo. I was told it would stop my periods and I could gain some weight. I thought going without a period would be more than welcome. I started the shot and within a month, started bleeding. I thought it was my period starting, however the bleeding never stopped and when I went back for my second shot, I mentioned the issue and was told it would end after my second shot. Nothing happened. I was told it would stop every time I went back for my shot. I ended up bleeding heavily for a year and a half, I developed severe anemia, there were clots, it was hard to live my daily life, and it put a strain on my marriage. I quit the shot in May of 2015 and was told the bleeding will stop and it will take awhile before my periods returned. I'm apparently a rare case or just odd, because the heavy bleeding finally stopped, but my period went back to normal a month after I had quit. My husband and I got divorced that same year. I started dating someone new a few years later, we became a couple -briefly engaged before we called it off- and wanted to have kids. However I was finding it hard to become pregnant. Maybe it was from being on depo, perhaps it triggered a possibility of early infertility. I had also noticed my periods were a bit odd for me, even now sometimes, since stopping the shot. In 2016, my periods were more painful and lasted the normal 7 days; currently since 2019 they have gone from 7 days to three or four days and I usually miss one period each year since stopping. I'm not sure if the shot had changed how my periods used to be, and I'm glad the nightmare of nonstop heavy bleeding ended, but I do feel disappointed that it has become harder suddenly to have more kids, I always wanted to have kids for years, but it doesn't seem like a possibility anymore.
My horror story started 20 years ago. I Was extremely fit & healthy. I used to go to the gym every single day because I loved it & couldn’t get enough. I loved the endorphin rush. I joined the Australian Army Reserves. I wanted to control my period while I was doing basic training. I went to see my doctor to get a prescription for the pill, but sadly didn’t get to see my usual doctor.
The doctor I saw told me what I needed was Depo. It would completely stop my period. Ironically the doctor took my pulse & told me I had the pulse of an elite athlete. I stupidly had the shot. Pretty much overnight I went from super fit to being unable to get out of bed. I bled for 6 months straight. I couldn’t control my mood, my temper or my weight. I got angry simply because a friend rang me. No reason, it was enough to make me feel pure rage.
I went back to the doctor, his response was have a second shot, most side effects wear off after it. I was smart enough to say no way in hell. 20 years I’ve battled & never recovered. It wasn’t long after the depot shot I developed my first auto immune disease - one I guarantee was from depo. Lichen sclerosis. My clitoris doesn’t exist anymore. I have hard itchy white skin in its place. It took years to get a diagnosis. One doctor just kept prescribing antibiotics - weeks & weeks of them. Another doctor took a look & said it looked like a testosterone deficiency.
She ran blood tests & my testosterone levels were non existent, she said the testosterone in my system was negligible. She gave me injections of testosterone - doses high enough to start a normal healthy woman to transition into a male, but my body just chewed through it & no matter how much I was injected, my levels remained next to nothing, although my clitoris slightly returned, still hard itchy & White. Eventually that doctor left the country & it took another 17 years to find another doctor who would prescribe testosterone. In my search I even encountered a doctor who told me women don’t have testosterone.
Eventually after a biopsy was done it was confirmed as lichen schlerosis. The symptoms started months after the one Depo shot I had - I don’t think that’s a coincidence knowing what I know now about Depo.
Over the years my symptoms kept getting worse, weight gain, brain fog, aching painful bones. My doctor just treated me for ‘chronic fatigue syndrome’ & prescribed me duromine, (phentermine) to help give me energy to keep working.
I reached a point where if I ate breakfast, that took more energy than my body had available & I had to lie down. I was walking in circles in the kitchen unable to retain a single thought. I was suicidal - I wasn’t living. There was no quality of life. I was just a burden on those close to me. Something made me ask my doctor to do a full screen of my thyroid, not just tsh. Then came the diagnosis of Hashimoto’s.
I am now prescribed t4 & t3 and instead of duromine now I’m prescribed modafinal, a narcolepsy medication so I can stay awake enough to work. 20 years ago I was fit, healthy, energetic, slim & living my best life. Now no matter how much I try to exercise, the whole time I just feel like I need to lie down. The one thing I resent Depo most of all for stealing from me was my ability to exercise. I never was able to do my basic training, so I had to quit the army reserves. I was only 28. I’m 48 this year, and since that shot, I have never woken up once feeling refreshed or energetic. I take fist fulls of supplements to try to feel better.
Depo is nothing but toxic poisonous sludge that’s not fit to be used on animals let alone humans. It stole my life. I have never recovered, and I doubt I ever will.
I went on the depo after the birth of my daughter and was on and off it for about 2 years.. I wasn't informed of it's complications or how hard it would be to conceive again. At 30 years of age I was never informed of the fertility issues that may present itself. My daughter is now 5 and no siblings as yet. I have been off the depo for a year now, my periods came back after about 3 months yet still not able to conceive even following ovulation. I managed to loose the 20 kg the shot gained me however the psychological effects of not conceiving is really grating on me. Please please people do your homework.