Menopause – The permanent cessation of menstruation and diagnosed in females after 1 year of absent menstrual periods. The average age of menopause is 51 years.
Perimenopause – Is characterized by symptoms associated with decreased blood levels of the female hormones estrogen and progesterone and usually begins a few years before the last menstrual cycle.
Possible Causes of Early Menopause
Physical/Emotional Changes of Perimenopause or Menopause
Treatment Options for Menopause Symptoms
Hormone Replacement (Systemic)
- Estrogen therapy
- Progesterone and Estrogen treatment (patients with a uterus).
- Localized Vaginal Estrogen Therapy – A pill, cream or ring method administered into the vagina to relieve vaginal symptoms of menopause and believed to be free of systemic effects/risks for most patients.
You should know:
Risks and benefits should be discussed with a healthcare provider.
Estrogen therapy alone can increase the risk of endometrial cancer in a patient with a uterus.
Systemic hormone replacement therapy may increase a patient’s risk of stroke, blood clots, cardiovascular disease and breast cancer.
- Prescription medications such as types of antidepressants.
- Herbal remedies such as soy products, black cohosh are helpful in some patients.
- Vaginal moisturizers and water-soluble lubricants to relieve vaginal symptoms.
- Paced breathing exercises, acupuncture and yoga.
Menopause can be a challenging time in a woman’s life. Help is available by exploring your treatment options with an experienced healthcare provider.