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After Depo Provera

5585 Views 3 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  Peony
My last Depo shot expired April 5th (2 months ago) and I have been charting using the FAM method for about 3 months. I've had some problems going off Depo (hair loss, weight gain, acne, sore and swollen breasts). These symptoms seem to be slowly decreasing as time goes on, thankfully.

My morning temperatures are still around 98.4 F (normal non-pregnant/non-Depo Provera temps would be in the 97 F range). But still that's an improvement from a couple months ago when my temps were consistently around 99.0. I'm wondering if any other women can relate their experiences going off Depo. How long did it take you to start ovulating again?
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Hi, there!

I can totally relate to what you're going through, as I am a former Depo user, as well. It's wonderful that you've already found FAM and that you are charting. Practicing FAM helped me to interpret my fertility signs after going off Depo, and although it took me awhile to get my cycle back and relatively 'normal,' using FAM helped me to identify all of my body's small 'accomplishments' (like the lower temps you noticed) while on its journey back to normalcy.

After being on Depo for almost three years, my last shot ran out in July 2002. I had no sign of a cycle until I started spotting in October 2002 (3 months later). I took this as a sign that my body was starting to try to cycle again. In January 2003 (6 months after my shot ran out), I had my first period-like bleed. That is also when I starting charting, and my temps were all over the place, so I could not confirm that I was O-ing yet (and I don't think I was). My next period-like bleed was in March, and from then on every 36-44 days I had abnormal cycles (lots of breakthrough bleeding, short luteal phases, days of dark brown spotting before and after period, etc.), but I could at least see that my body was trying to get back to normal. From reading TCOYF, I gleaned enough information to figure my body was trying to reach healthy hormonal thresholds each cycle, and it probably wasn't quite there yet (I wasn't charting at this time because I could tell things weren't quite working as they should yet). Still, it was good that my body was trying to re-establish hormonal balance. My cycles became more and more predictable each time.

In July 2003 (so a year after my shot should have worn off), I started fairly healthy cycles. They were still around 36 days (but this is normal for me), but I could finally see a 'normal' cervical fluid pattern, and I was no longer experiencing breakthrough bleeding or midcycle bleeding, so I started charting again. I have been ovulating since then, and I now chart every cycle to confirm that. I must say, I love FAM. I really would have had no idea what was going on with my body this whole time without it!

For months, I frequented this depo board and was able to get a lot of good information from the ladies there:

I will say that I did not employ any herbal remedies during this process. Some of the ladies on the boards I mention above have used herbals successfully, but I didn't want to introduce any other chemical influences (even if natural) into my body. I believed my system would work itself out, and it did.

While some women are able to start ovulating fairly quickly after going off Depo, it seems that anywhere from 6-18 months is more the norm. It's a very invasive and dramatic form of BC, and it seems to take some time for your body to recover--but, trust me, it will recover! (This being said, you should be aware that there are individuals who have been waiting up to 3 or 4 years now for their cycles to return; however, there are usually some other underlying problems in those cases. Since you're practicing FAM, you're more likely to be aware of any problems that could complicate your recovery ... just something to be aware of.)

Let me know if you have any other questions. Just be patient, take good care of yourself, and keep up with your FAM practices, and you should be fine.

Health and happiness,
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I don't know when I ovulated after Depo since I wasn't charting, but I suspect it was quite a while. After my last shot wore off I had an IUD inserted. Other than the initial bleeding after the IUD insertion, it was a little over a year and a half before I got a period. Over the next 3 years my cycles were very irregular, running from 3 to 9 months. Some of that was progesterone withdrawal bleeding, some was natural. After about 5 years my OB at the time recommended I go on the pill to "regulate" my cycles. After about 2.5 yrs on the pill I stopped in 12/03 and started charting. I know I ovulated that first cycle off the pill, but don't know anything past that.
I was on Depo for 3 years, I received my last injection late in Dec of 01, had my first af 4-11-02, conceived right after that. I wasn't charting ovulation then, but obviously it was pretty quick!
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