Premature Menopause is defined as premature ovarian failure before the age of 40 years. In early menopause, the ovaries don’t produce normal amounts of the hormone oestrogen or release eggs regularly. Infertility is common. However, it’s possible a woman with this condition could get pregnant with treatment.
- Irregular or missed periods
- Heavier or lighter periods than usual Hot flashes
These symptoms indicate that the ovaries are producing less estrogen. In addition to the above symptoms, some women may experience:
- Vaginal dryness
- Irritability of the bladder and worsening loss of bladder control
- Emotional changes (irritability, mood swings, mild depression)
- Dry skin, eyes or mouth
- Decreased libido
- Weight gain
- Night sweat
- Vaginal pain during intercourse
In addition to the symptoms listed above, if you are under 40 and have any of the following conditions, you should see your doctor to determine if you are experiencing premature menopause.
Risk Factors for Premature Menopause
Possible factors that could cause premature menopause include:
- Have surgery that removes the ovaries.
- Being a smoker.
- Having surgery to remove the uterus (hysterectomy).
- A side effect of chemotherapy or radiation therapy.
- Have a family history of menopause at an early age.
- Have certain medical conditions, including: Chromosomal abnormalities (fragile X, Turner syndrome).
- Autoimmune diseases (i.e. rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease).
- HIV and AIDS.
- Have certain infections, including: Mumps.
- Breast tenderness.
- Racing heart.
- Joint and muscle aches and pains.
- Difficulty concentrating, memory lapses
Prevention is Better
Some cases of early menopause are inevitable. Other times, you can take steps to prevent or delay it. Prevention tips include:
- Stop smoking immediately.
- Exercise regularly, which can keep you healthy and prevent obesity.
- Maintain a healthy weight.
- Use natural, hormone-free skin care products.
- Eat natural, healthy foods as much as possible and avoid processed foods.
Types of treatments
- Hormone therapy: Hormone therapy is available in different forms, including pills, patches, transdermal sprays, or gels or creams. Localized hormonal treatments are also available for intravaginal use. HT is the most effective way to control symptoms such as hot flashes and vaginal dryness. Since HT has been associated with certain health risks (heart attack, stroke, and breast cancer), experts recommend using the lowest effective dose of hormone therapy for the longest time. short time needed to control symptoms.
- Antidepressant Drugs: Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors and related drugs have been shown to be effective in controlling symptoms of hot flashes in up to 60% of women.
- Non-hormonal vaginal gels, creams, and lubricants can help prevent the symptoms of vaginal dryness.
- Assisted reproductive technologies: in selected cases, pregnancy may be achieved using donor eggs in women with premature menopause.
No special test is needed to determine that you are not having a period, but sometimes women start to have symptoms of menopause and irregular periods. At this point, they can be tested to determine their ovarian function. For example, tests may be done to rule out pregnancy or other causes of missed periods, such as certain thyroid diseases. The level of follicle stimulating hormone is often measured in the blood to determine if a woman is approaching menopause and to check the functional status of her ovaries. FSH stimulates the ovaries to produce estrogen, so the levels of this hormone rise when estrogen levels drop. FSH levels above 40 mIU / ml are considered a diagnosis of menopause. Levels of ovarian hormones, such as estradiol, can also be measured, as low levels (levels below 32 pg / ml) suggest menopause.