View Full Version : Estrogen helps ADHD?


jr22hockey
09-02-11, 01:19 AM
So as we all know, ADHD is much more common in guys than girls.

What some of you might not know is that this is because of all of the effects of estrogen on the brain. Here, read up-> (search "estrogen and the brain" on google and its the first article; its a medscape article).

Women show more adhd symptoms during PMS or after menopause (I think) due to this as well. Also, I have heard of menopause induced ADHD, but I digress.

I'm a guy and thus would never consider estrogen replacement therapy as a treatment option, but I'm sure there are some for whom it would be worth it.

Any thoughts on this?

adhdme
09-02-11, 02:12 AM
Well I was taught to never believe anything the first time I hear it or read it, by a great historian.

I would say, no guy would benefit from it, but a female might give it a try. I prefer stimulants, science science science.

Impetus
09-02-11, 07:39 AM
You're right, estrogen can significantly affect ADD symptoms.

http://www.additudemag.com/adhd/article/5245-5.html

dsvlil1
09-02-11, 11:24 AM
I had a functional brain when I was pregnant. Lots of hormones and my head was so clear. Way better than ritalin, lol.

holmracing
09-02-11, 11:35 AM
This is our compensation for being pregnant... We can't take the stimulant meds while prego or nursing but our estrogen levels go through the roof and help us focus better. Unfortunately the estrogen also makes us moody so for the next few months i can focus on being a grouch!!! LOL

In a book i just got i was reading that for some women to take birth control pills to regulate the estrogen and stimulants has had really good results in helping treat ADHD.

fracturedstory
09-02-11, 08:57 PM
Are you sure females don't exhibit the symptoms differently?

More males have ADHD than females my hat. All the females I know have some form of ADHD that I get confused when I meet a female not affected by it.
Also, it seems that losing things, having selective memory and not being terribly organised is often a female stereotype. Don't forget about impulsive spending.
It's very hard for non-ADHD females to take the issues of ADHD females seriously because they think they relate to it.

meadd823
09-03-11, 05:56 AM
I am hyper/combo ADHD I was born with ADHD , I had ADHD after puberty , it seems worse just before my menses , so wtf I would assume I produce estrogen.

ADHDTigger
09-03-11, 07:49 AM
There is insufficient proper research around the impact of estrogen on ADHD. What is considered to be fact on the matter suggests correlation.

Menopause induced ADHD? Horsesh*t. You had it long before menopause or you are seriously reaching for an excuse.

Lunacie
09-03-11, 09:36 AM
I agree with Fortune - I believe women and girls are mostly under-diagnosed.
Once doctors learn how ADHD looks different in females we'll likely find that
just as many females have ADHD.

dsvlil1
09-03-11, 10:26 AM
They are now coming to understand that estrogen alters the presentation of Asperger's in female populations. The male to female ratio of diagnosis is strikingly similar there too. More than just coincidence me thinks.

Impetus
09-03-11, 10:29 AM
There is insufficient proper research around the impact of estrogen on ADHD. What is considered to be fact on the matter suggests correlation.

Menopause induced ADHD? Horsesh*t. You had it long before menopause or you are seriously reaching for an excuse.

agreed!

the doc that diagnosed me said the same thing. I have always been ADHD, menopause just made it so I couldn't compensate anymore.

Before meno, I would have good days and bad days. Never knew what I was going to wake up to. After meno, everyday was a bad day for 8 months!

Still have good days and bad days, but I can still muddle through and give the appearance of being consistent

fracturedstory
09-03-11, 07:29 PM
People think that boys are more affected in autism too, but this is because females don't have as extreme behaviour which might be the reason why so many females with ADHD are under diagnosed or misdiagnosed with something else.

Fortunately, there's a lot of material on the differences in females with autism.


Girls slip through the diagnostic net, said Attwood, because they are so good at camouflaging or masking their symptoms. "Boys tend to externalise their problems, while girls learn that, if they're good, their differences will not be noticed," he said. "Boys go into attack mode when frustrated, while girls suffer in silence and become passive-aggressive. Girls learn to appease and apologise. They learn to observe people from a distance and imitate them. It is only if you look closely and ask the right questions, you see the terror in their eyes and see that their reactions are a learnt script."


More: http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2009/apr/12/autism-aspergers-girls

There are dozens of articles online talking about the differences between males and females with autism.

The differences:
http://www.help4aspergers.com/pb/wp_a58d4f6a/images/img287904ad237f1d2ab3.JPG

Female Asperger traits:
http://www.help4aspergers.com/pb/wp_a58d4f6a/images/img244154ad237783e339.JPG

More:
http://shazwellyn.hubpages.com/hub/Autism-Spectrum-Disorder-Aspergers-Syndrome-Women-and-Girls


It's probably the same reason why Inattentive ADHD is under diagnosed compared to ADHD-PH. If you're not showing any disrupting behaviour, especially in kids, then people aren't going to suspect you've got anything.
It doesn't apply to all females though. Those who show more extreme behaviour do get diagnosed much earlier than the ones who don't. I show the more extreme male side of symptoms. More logic than emotion. Wide shoulders, easily build muscle. Deep voice. More into technical things. Externally show my frustration too.

My ADHD is worse around menses too. I don't have period induced ADHD. But I do have PMDD.

Fortune
09-03-11, 09:04 PM
I agree with Fortune - I believe women and girls are mostly under-diagnosed.
Once doctors learn how ADHD looks different in females we'll likely find that
just as many females have ADHD.

If you're referring to an earlier post in this thread, that was fracturedstory.

But I agree with everything she said, too.

Lunacie
09-04-11, 07:22 AM
If you're referring to an earlier post in this thread, that was fracturedstory.

But I agree with everything she said, too.

Oops :o sorry.

LynneC
09-04-11, 09:28 AM
I am hyper/combo ADHD I was born with ADHD , I had ADHD after puberty , it seems worse just before my menses , so wtf I would assume I produce estrogen.
Estrogen & progesterone falls during your period, which causes shedding of the endometrium. So it would make sense that just prior to menses (and during), your symptoms would be worse, as your estrogen level is declining.
Here's a handy diagram to show the different hormonal phases:
http://www.holisticonline.com/images/menstrual-cycle.GIF

jr22hockey
09-05-11, 10:47 AM
Statistically speaking the ratio of men to women with adhd is 3:1. I think a lot of you guys are looking at ADHD as if it were caused by one gene which you either have or you don't. What we now know is that it takes a number or faulty genes to push the level of post-synaptic dopamine below a certain threshold at which point you start seeing symptoms of ADHD; tangible symptoms such as auditory processing problems and hyperactivity.

I created this thread to discuss the implications of ERT as a potential treatment option, not to discuss whether or not estrogen has an impact on ADHD or whether or not ADHD is more common in boys than girls. It has been scientifically proven that it does and it is so you who are arguing against those points are both wrong and have missed my point completely. If anyone is having trouble finding them, I suppose I could find them just to prevent the spread of further misinformation.

And yeah there is a such thing as menopause induced ADHD. Women's brains do slow down at a faster rate than what can be explained by the normal aging process during/after menopause. For the women who were borderline ADHD before this, symptoms do increase, possibly pushing them below the threshold into what can be considered ADHD.

Not to sound arrogant but if it changes the way anyone interprets what I'm saying, I am a pre-med student at a prestigious university who is majoring in neuroscience and do have extensive knowledge on this subject.

So back to my point; has anyone here ever had estrogen replacement therapy? If so, did you notice an improvement in your symptoms?
I want to hear anecdotes

Lunacie
09-05-11, 01:36 PM
No estrogen replacement therapy here, you can stop reading now if you want.

But ... just because girls are currently under-diagnosed Does Not Mean it's
been "scientifically proven" that males have ADHD more often than females.

Progesterone levels don't drop only when a woman reaches menopause, women
who are very thin are also a bit low on progesterone - does that also make
their ADHD symptoms worse? I'd hate to think my symptoms, or those of my
granddaughter, would be even worse than they are if we lost too much weight.


So - if we're right that just as many girls have ADHD then the basis of your
theory is wrong. The estrogen may have something to do with the way ADHD
seems to present differently in girls than in boys, eh?

Fortune
09-05-11, 05:46 PM
Statistically speaking the ratio of men to women with adhd is 3:1.

...

I created this thread to discuss the implications of ERT as a potential treatment option, not to discuss whether or not estrogen has an impact on ADHD or whether or not ADHD is more common in boys than girls. It has been scientifically proven that it does and it is so you who are arguing against those points are both wrong and have missed my point completely. If anyone is having trouble finding them, I suppose I could find them just to prevent the spread of further misinformation.


I find it difficult to take your statements at face value, as "scientifically proven" is not how science works. Evidence can point to conclusions, but those conclusions are falsifiable, and future research can cast doubt on what seemed to be solid assumptions (http://www.sahlgrenska.gu.se/english/news_and_events/news/News_Detail/girls-with-autism-or-adhd-symptoms-not-taken-seriously.cid954134).

She concludes that the healthcare system does not take girls with symptoms of autism or ADHD seriously enough.Its a shame as we now have effective treatments for both autism and ADHD. We therefore need more training across the public sector on girls with mental problems, social interaction difficulties and/or attention problems, she stresses.

It may be that more boys than girls have ADHD, I won't say that it can't be the case. I will say that as long as medical professionals themselves make it more difficult for girls who have ADHD to even be diagnosed, let alone treated, that it is difficult to establish whether this is actually the case. Evidence does show that girls are being underserved by the medical profession, however, which casts doubt on the declared ratios (such as 3:1).

jr22hockey
09-06-11, 10:21 AM
http://adhd-treatment-options.blogspot.com/search/label/ADHD%20and%20the%20menstrual%20cycle

sarahsweets
09-06-11, 11:10 AM
http://adhd-treatment-options.blogspot.com/search/label/ADHD%20and%20the%20menstrual%20cycle

It's wonderful that you're pre -med your parents must be proud. A blog is not factual scientific proof of this estrogen theory. I'm not even sure I buy the "borderline "adhd idea. You either have it or you don't with mild symptoms or severe symptoms. A menopausal woman can not have her adhd activated by menopause. Exacerbated yes.

Lunacie
09-06-11, 11:12 AM
http://adhd-treatment-options.blogspot.com/search/label/ADHD%20and%20the%20menstrual%20cycle

Exactly - as difficult as it is for anyone with ADHD to find the bet med
at the best dose for them - then to have to tweak it every 23-28 days
because of changing hormonal levels ... ARRRGGGGHHHHHHH!!!
Aren't you glad you're not a woman?

Impetus
09-06-11, 01:23 PM
i'm a 36 yr old that had a TAH/BSO roughly 18 months ago. i'm on hrt. i was diagnosed 6 months post op.

my doc's explanation my situation was that it's been there all along. the drastic hormone shift made it so that i couldn't compensate anymore. he said it isn't a scenario that he sees frequently, but he does see it.

i don't think it can be induced so much as the ability to compensate can be markedly affected by menopause.

Impetus
09-06-11, 01:24 PM
Exactly - as difficult as it is for anyone with ADHD to find the bet med
at the best dose for them - then to have to tweak it every 23-28 days
because of changing hormonal levels ... ARRRGGGGHHHHHHH!!!
Aren't you glad you're not a woman?

this makes me glad i had a hysterectomy, lol! :D

Lunacie
09-06-11, 01:42 PM
this makes me glad i had a hysterectomy, lol! :D

I had a 23 day cycle and crazy PMS - I was happy when I thought I was in
peri-menopause. Good thing I wasn't PMSing when the doctor told me I was
"too young for that" or I'd have shot him 15 years before his wife did (he
was cheating on her with his nurse). :eek:

I remember so many times over the years complaining to my hubby and my
doctor about wanting to get off the damm roller coaster of emotional ups
and downs. I just about danced when I had my last period and my first
hot flash - and I knew it was off that damm roller coaster at last. :D

fatality
09-10-11, 09:27 PM
Testosterone helps me. I feel way more confident and don't beat myself up for mistakes that I make. If people didn't abuse steroids for muscle gain, I'd be buying this stuff over the counter to treat my low t. I need to go to the doctor and get my blood checked. My facial hair has started to receed and turn white like a wizard

jr22hockey
01-11-12, 05:42 AM
http://www.amenclinics.com/brain-science/spect-image-gallery/spect-atlas/images-of-pms/
Look a the effect that the rise and fall of estrogen/progesterone have on the brain