Brett and Angela had it all, good looks and great jobs, plus they were still very much in love after fifteen years of marriage. Parents of five children all under the age of ten, they faced many of the challenges of raising a large family, but they managed to keep the sparks flying in the bedroom. It is well known that the sex in a long term relationship can become hum drum, boring, a bit of a snoozer. Every couple has to work at it to keep it exciting and fun!
Angela, a full-time career woman, gave her all when it came to achieving a work-life balance which was quite the feat given that her job as a professional speaker required long hours, a lot of travel and public engagements. She always knew that sex was the tie that binds a couple and so she made sure that her intimate relationship with her husband was top of mind. When she learned she was a carrier of the BRCA1 gene mutation, she knew she had a big decision to make that may impact her family, her life, and her sex life with Brett. She’d reached her tipping point.
Angela decided she would have her ovaries removed because she was a carrier of the BRCA1 gene mutation. This gene mutation placed her at a significantly increased risk of breast and ovarian cancer. The good news is that removal of a woman’s ovaries reduces the risk of breast and ovarian cancer by approximately 80%.
The bad news is that women who have had their ovaries removed will immediately go into surgical menopause, whereby they may experience any or all of the associated symptoms such as hot flashes, night sweats, palpitations, anxiety, mood swings and of course vaginal dryness because of the sharp decline in estrogen. Vaginal dryness may lead to painful sex and painful sex may lead to low sexual desire in women (and men to be quite honest! Men don’t want to hurt the woman they love!)
Many women with vaginal dryness due to surgical menopause have been frightened away from taking hormone therapy like estrogen because of the fears associated with it because of the highly overstated results of Women’s Health Initiative Study. Personal moisturizers that are hormone-free are now available for women who have vaginal dryness regardless of the reason. For my patients, I often recommend RepaGyn, a hormone-free suppository, that is inserted into the vagina that improves a women’s natural lubrication and helps restore health to her vagina.
Angela was happy to learn about RepaGyn as she did not want her sex life to end with her beloved Brett. Life’s troubles do not discriminate and no couple is immune to the consequences of a sexless marriage under the right circumstances. Angela feared vaginal dryness may have done that. No couple regardless of fame, fortune, or beauty, can escape the challenges of being in a relationship, health issues and/or working in and outside of the home. Vaginal dryness could be the end of a sex life, but Angela wanted to be sure it wasn’t.