Median age for menopause: The request could not be satisfied
Menopause Is Different for Women of Color
With Nanette Santoro MD
Stress and socioeconomic status likely play a role in the difference in duration and onset.
One thing we know for certain about the phases of menopause is that the experience varies widely from individual to individual. A woman may have a month of hot flashes and then a year later realize, casually, that she hasn’t had a period in a full 12 months. Another woman may struggle through nearly a decade of depression and sleeplessness before she hits the milestone, only for her hot flashes to overstay their welcome by another seven years or so.
There are many factors that go into why this is so. Everything from whether you smoke to how much you exercise to your family history to the amount of stress in your daily life can all play a role in how menopause happens for you. But one surprising factor appears to be race and ethnicity. Studies suggest that Black and Latina women may begin perimenopause earlier, experience more intense effects, and have a longer transition period.
What the new research shows
Much of what we know about how we experience menopause comes from the largest ongoing study of women and menopause, the Study of Women’s Health Across the Nation (SWAN), which began in 1996. It’s a multi-site, longitudinal, epidemiologic study focused on the physical, biological, psychological, and social changes during menopause. Women from a variety of socioeconomic and ethnic backgrounds have participated, giving researchers a glimpse into possible differences in how we all experience the transition.
In the US, the median age for reaching menopause (the point at which a person has gone for 12 consecutive months without a period) is 51. The research in SWAN shows that Black women reach menopause at 49, two years earlier than the national median age. Other SWAN data shows Latina women reach menopause two years earlier than the median age as well. It also appears that Black women spend more time in the menopause transition than white women do.
And then there are the differences in hot flashes, one of the most common discomforts of the transition. More Black and Latina women report experiencing vasomotor symptoms (hot flashes and night sweats) than white women do, and Latina women experience more vaginal dryness than other women.
Among the women who report vasomotor symptoms, white women experience hot flashes for around 6.5 years, while for Latinas it’s 8.9 years, and for Black women it’s 10 years. Research from the University of Washington shows that Native American women may experience the worst perimenopausal hot flashes of all.
What causes racial differences in the menopausal experience?
Dr. Nanette Santoro, professor and E. Stewart Taylor Chair of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, has contributed to the research in SWAN. When asked why women of color experience menopause differently, she says, “My educated guess is that a lot of the differences have their basis in lifestyle, SES (socioeconomic status), and other stressors such as systemic racism and their long-term consequences.”
But it’s complicated. Dr. Santoro says that using SWAN, she tried to identify how much perceived discrimination was linked with conditions such as hypertension and other cardiovascular issues. When she and her team asked participants about how they felt they were treated by others, it was white women who reported the most discrimination (in the form of sexism). “The Black women reported less overall perceived discrimination, which we interpreted as the fact that it is just so common that they become inured to it, which then makes it impossible to assess the effect of systemic racism on allostatic load. And the Latinas often lived in communities that were only Spanish-speaking, so in their daily lives they did not perceive much discrimination because they did not interact with people who were likely to discriminate against them.”
This allostatic load Dr. Santoro mentions refers to the “wear and tear” on the body that comes from the accumulation of chronic stress. As researchers and doctors have been learning, stress isn’t all in your head. It writes itself on your body, damaging your cardiovascular health, disrupting your digestion, and sparking inflammation. And this can lead to greater risk for diseases and lowered resilience in the face of illness. Because it’s accumulative, allostatic load increases for everyone arriving at midlife. However, a 2018 study found higher allostatic load for Black women compared with white women of the same age.
Another way to put this is “weathering,” a hypothesis Dr. Arline Geronimus, professor in the department of health behavior and health education at the University of Michigan School of Public Health, developed through her studies of racial disparities in health. Her team found that Black women at all socioeconomic levels had the highest allostatic load scores compared with other people of the same age. “The weathering effects of living in a race-conscious society may be the greatest among those Black women most likely to engage in high-effort coping.” Systemic racism is literally bad for our health, though it is certainly not the only factor in when women reach menopause, or how long the transition lasts.
Does a higher allostatic load lead to an earlier onset of perimenopause or a longer menopause transition? We know that hormones are highly sensitive to stress, and at least one study suggests that “psychosocial stress was predictive of an even earlier median age of menopause in African Americans” among others. At the very least, enduring a long menopause transition with more severe hot flashes and night sweats certainly doesn’t help a person cope with high stress levels.
Of course, it’s very difficult to separate race and ethnicity from socioeconomic factors. SWAN researchers made a point of working with women from a diverse range of ethnic, cultural, and economic groups: recent Chinese immigrants in Northern California, Japanese women from the Beverly Hills area, Latinas from outside Newark, NJ, Black women from a mix of socioeconomic backgrounds from Pittsburgh, Boston, Michigan, and Chicago, as well as white women from each of these areas. “What this means is that our sincere attempt to be inclusive gave us a very diverse cohort,” Dr. Santoro says, “which is great, but it also has given us many analytic challenges.”
There is a strong correlation between self-identified race and ethnicity and health outcomes, Santoro says. “But all of that begs the question of whether or not these racial/ethnic differences have their basis in genetics or the environment.” In this context, environment means everything but genetics, from lifestyle to socioeconomic level. “For the most part it appears that environment is the bigger player, but of course genetics may also be playing a role. It’s just extremely difficult to tease out, especially for Black women, who are such a mixture of backgrounds.”
Why it matters
A later and shorter menopause transition isn’t just more comfortable; it’s also a marker of aging and health. The timing of menopause is linked with your risk for heart disease, stroke, osteoporosis, bone fracture, and your overall life expectancy. Later and shorter menopause is better for all of these. Estrogen has a lot of protective qualities, so having it in your system longer is generally better for women’s health, though it is unfortunately also linked with greater risk for breast and ovarian cancer.
What does this mean for women of color?
You may be experiencing perimenopause symptoms sooner than you expected to. Now is a good time to find a gynecologist who specializes in menopause who can help you through this transition. For many women, perimenopause is a critical opportunity to make some lifestyle changes to support your health through the latter half of your life. It’s time to start putting yourself first, so you can serve as the elder your community needs.
The North American Menopause Society (NAMS) has a directory of menopause practitioners by location, where you can find a NAMS-certified menopause practitioner (NCMP) in your area.
See our list of sources for further resources.
Updated on: 03/10/21
Coronavirus and Menopause
About menopause | The Royal Women’s Hospital
Menopause is a natural event for women.
In the lead-up to menopause, your ovaries may not produce an egg each month. This can lead to changes in the hormones circulating in your body. Specifically, oestrogen levels may be increased and progesterone levels may be lower. After menopause, oestrogen levels also fall considerably. Women are considered ‘postmenopausal’ one year after their final menstrual period. Menopause usually occurs naturally at around age 50 but may happen earlier due to chemotherapy, radiation treatment or surgery.
What is the menopause?
Menopause consists of three stages:
- The menopause transition (also called perimenopause). These are the years leading up to the final menstrual period and the year after the final menstrual period. During this time, changes in your hormones may lead to symptoms such as hot flushes and changes in menstrual bleeding patterns. Night sweats (hot flushes occurring at night) can cause sleep disturbances and affect your mood and concentration during the day. Some women are still able to conceive during the menopause transition so you should continue to use contraception until at least twelve months after your final period if you don’t wish to become pregnant.
- Natural menopause is the spontaneous, permanent end to menstrual periods that is not caused by medical treatment or surgery. It is confirmed by twelve consecutive months of no menstrual bleeding.
- Postmenopause is the time beyond one year after your final menstrual bleeding and lasts for the rest of your life.
How will menopause affect me?
Menopause affects every woman differently. Most women (around 85 per cent) get some hot flushes and/or night sweats but are able to manage these without treatment. Around 20 per cent of women have symptoms which are troublesome and/or prolonged and these women may consider treatment. The experience of menopause and symptoms differ in women from different ethnic groups, for example, for some Asian women, body and joint aches and pains are the most troublesome symptom.
Factors that may affect your experience of menopause
- Your age at menopause. Younger women who were not expecting to go through menopause may have more difficulty than women at the average age.
- What you are expecting of menopause. Women who expect to have troublesome menopausal symptoms are more likely to experience troublesome symptoms when they go through menopause. So, a positive and informed approach to menopause may help.
- Many women are relieved that they no longer have menstrual periods and are no longer fertile.
When does menopause begin?
Menopausal symptoms (hot flushes, night sweats, menstrual changes) usually start from around age 47 years. The final menstrual period is usually about age 51 but can vary considerably. There is currently no reliable way to predict when you will experience menopause and what your menopausal symptoms will be like.
When menopause happens before 40 years it is called ‘premature’, and when it happens before 45 years it is called ‘early’. Menopause after age 45 years is considered normal and there is no upper age limit to when it can begin. However, most women have experienced menopause by age 55 years.
Why does menopause happen?
The reasons for menopause are not well understood. Currently, we think that menopause happens because the ovaries run out of eggs. This leads to changes in the hormones produced by the ovaries and the hormones from the brain that control the ovaries. Eventually, the ovaries stop producing eggs and menstrual periods stop permanently. After menopause, the ovaries continue to produce oestrogen at lower levels and also testosterone.
When menopause comes early
There are risks associated with early menopause:
- Loss of fertility at a younger age.
- An increased risk of osteoporosis and fracture in women who do not take menopausal hormone therapy (MHT).
Early menopause is particularly difficult for women who have not yet started or completed their families.
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Women Who Menstruate Before Age 11 At Higher Risk of Premature Menopause : Shots
Data from four countries suggests a link between starting menstruation by age 11 and earlier menopause.
Data from four countries suggests a link between starting menstruation by age 11 and earlier menopause.
Women who get their first period when they were 11 or younger are more likely to hit menopause before the age of 40, a study finds. And women with early menstruation who had no children were even more likely to have premature menopause.
Women in the study who got their first period at age 11 or younger were 80 percent more likely to have premature menopause, which is the relative risk compared to women who got their first periods later. And they had a 30 percent increased risk of early menopause, defined as by age 44.
The median age of menopause for women in the study, which was published Tuesday in the journal Human Reproduction, was 50. The median age of a first period was 13.
As many women going through menopause know, the process can come with unwanted symptoms like hot flashes, fatigue, and bone loss. Early menopause can increase the risk of more serious health concerns, including polycystic ovary syndrome, heart disease, diabetes and endometriosis.
That’s why, the researchers say, it’s important for women to be aware of early menstruation as a potential health risk factor. Overall, 2 percent of the women in the study had premature menopause, and 7.6 percent had early menopause. And 14.1 percent started their periods at age 11 or younger.
“Understanding the relationship [between first and last periods] will provide us with the opportunity to monitor or intervene as early as possible,” says lead author Gita Mishra in an email. Mishra is a professor of life course epidemiology at the University of Queensland, Australia. The study compiled data from nine studies and 51,540 women in Australia, England, Denmark and Japan.
Knowing a woman started her period earlier than most, along with other factors that influence menopause timing, such as the age of a woman’s mother when she reached menopause, the number of children she has had, and lifestyle choices like smoking, could be useful to help clinicians anticipate health problems even before a woman stops menstruating, Mishra says.
Researchers also found that in the women who got their first period at age 11 or younger, those who hadn’t had children were almost twice as likely to experience premature menopause than those who had one, two or more children. This could be because women remained childless due to ovarian problems that then lead to early menopause, but it’s not clear from this study.
“Women should be informed of their elevated risk of premature menopause if they began menstruating at a young age,” Mishra says, “especially those with fertility problems, so that they can make informed decisions.”
Gynaecologist reveals average age women go through menopause
A top gynaecologist has revealed the average age British women go through the menopause.
Dr Narendra Pisal, consultant gynaecologist at London Gynaecology, told medical site Net Doctor that menopause literally means ‘end of menstrual cycle’, occurring when the body stops producing female sex hormones from the ovaries. It’s pre-cursed by the perimenopause – when periods become irregular and symptoms start – which can last between six months and 10 years.
Dr Pisal said the average age of menopause for British women is 51, but ‘this can be different for you depending on your ethnicity and genetics’.
Every woman’s experience of the menopause is slightly different, but many of us report similar frustrating side effects such as hot flushes, night sweats and weight gain. One of the most common menopause symptoms, however, is often overlooked: pain during sex.
For many women, penetrative sex becomes painful during, and after, menopause but few know why or how to overcome the issue.
A former GP also told Net Doctor that painful sex is down to a biological change that occurs as levels of female sex hormones, oestrogen and progesterone, drop during the menopause.
Dr Shirin Lakhani of Elite Aesthetics says the discomfort is often down to a shift in the hormones that ‘make the tissues in the vagina become thin and dry, and this dryness in turn can add friction during sex’. She says the vagina also feels tighter as it’s not able to stretch as much as it did pre-menopause.
The answer to making sex enjoyable again? Dr Lakhani suggests making time for foreplay to encourage vaginal lubrication and help you relax, along with exploring other forms of pleasure including clitoral stimulation. After all the majority of women aren’t actually able to orgasm through penetration alone, a new study has found.
You can read Net Doctor’s full report on sex and menopause here.
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Indian women facing early menopause: Survey
Nearly 4 per cent of Indian women experience signs of menopause between 29 and 34 years of age, says a recent survey conducted by The Institute for Social and Economic Change (ISEC). The figure goes up to 8 per cent in the case of women between 35 and 39 years of age.
What is shocking is that women around the world normally reach menopause between 45 and 55 years of age, with a mean age of around 51 years.
According to the study, women often notice an irregular menstrual cycle that suddenly ceases. This is when most of them approach a gynaecologist and are confronted with premature menopause.
“One of the culprits could be Premature Ovarian Failure (POF) — a condition when the ovaries stop functioning normally before the age of 40. The cause of POF goes undetermined in majority of the cases, but changing food habits, work culture with increased stress are some of the reasons,” said Dr. Shobha Gupta, Medical Director and IVF specialist at Mother’s Lap IVF Centre.
Dr. Shobha said: “A woman’s body is going through so many changes today because of the atmosphere and lifestyle requirements, which is why we have been seeing cases of premature ovary failure in young adults. It is better to plan a family on time, and if you have any medical issues then you should consult your doctor soon.”
Its symptoms are the same as those of natural menopause — change in pattern of periods, hot flashes, mood swings, crying spells and sleeplessness. “If you experience these, you should consult any fertility centre and go for a blood test. If your FSH level (follicle stimulating hormone) is more than 25mIU/L then you may have POF” said Dr. Anubha Singh, infertility expert from Shantah IVF Centre.
“Lifestyle choices like smoking, drinking, thyroid or auto-immune diseases, exposure to radiation like chemotherapy or radiotherapy, and poor nutrition can also cause premature menopause. Along with this, genital tuberculosis can also lead ovaries to fail,” Dr. Singh added.
Multiple studies, meanwhile, have shown that the age of menopause can be inherited.
Also, a strong association has been observed between siblings, twins, mothers and daughters. Further, menopause seems accelerated in women whose mothers experienced early menopause or premature ovarian failure.
The study concluded that though heredity does play a role, the extent remains to be identified.
You can try natural treatments to help relieve hot flashes. Among the most common tips are: Eat soy: Soy contains phytoestrogens. The best sources of soy are tofu, soy powder, soymilk, and soy nuts.
Exercise: An active lifestyle can lower your risk of premature menopause. 30 minutes of aerobic exercise thrice a week is very important.
A good multivitamin supplement: Make sure your body receives an ample supply of Vitamin D, E, zinc and magnesium.
Eat foods that are rich in calcium such as cheese, almonds, green leafy vegetables, milk, fortified cereals like corn flakes, and raisin bran.
What Age Do Women Reach Menopause?
‘What age will I reach menopause?’ is a question on the minds of many women. Menopause is the stage of womanhood that marks the end of fertility; it is defined as occurring when your period has stopped for over a year. The average age that women reach menopause is 51. However, for some women it can even occur before the age of 40 or up until their 60s.
Will there be any signs that ‘announce’ the onset of menopause?
Pre-menopause/perimenopause is the stage a woman goes through several years before menopause. The most common sign of pre-menopause is menstrual irregularity. Some women experience menopause-like symptoms such as hot flashes, insomnia, vaginal dryness and mood swings. This phase may last between two to eight years.
There’s no way to know for sure when the change will start, but there are a number of factors that influence the age you may reach menopause.
Factors That Influence Menopause Age:
- The Age Your Mother Reached Menopause: The most important factor is the age at which your mother’s menopause began. Menopause is strongly linked to genetics, with most women reaching menopause around the same age as their mother did.
- Ethnicity: It is not known why, but American studies have shown that African American and Hispanic descent women tend to reach menopause earlier than Caucasian women, while Asian women, particularly Japanese and Chinese, tend to reach menopause at a later age.
- Chemotherapy: depending on the type and location of cancer, some chemotherapy treatments induce temporary menopause in women. If your cycles do return, you may reach menopause a few years before you otherwise might have. If you are starting or having chemotherapy treatment, we recommend talking to your doctor about temporary menopause.
- Ovarian surgery: surgery to treat ovarian complications such as endometriosis can affect your menopause age. Removal of the ovaries (oophorectomy) will result in immediate ‘surgical menopause’. We again recommend talking to your doctor if you have any concerns about ovarian surgery.
- Smoking: on top of the number of diseases and complications that smoking causes, it can also hasten the age at which your menopause will begin. It is the only factor that you can control. Smoking is thought to have an anti-estrogen effect on the female body. If you smoke but your mother did not, you will likely reach menopause earlier than she did. Former smokers have only a slightly earlier age at natural menopause than those who never smoked, and increased time since quitting reduces the difference.
Factors That Do Not Influence Menopause Age:
- Age of First Period: The age at which you have your first period does not influence the age of menopause.
- Pregnancy and breast feeding: Your choice to have children and whether to breastfeed them has no impact on the typical age women reach menopause.
- Use of hormonal birth control: Using hormonal birth control methods has not been shown to either delay nor hasten menopause age
Other than to not smoke, there is no definitive way to change the age at which women reach menopause. If you’re feeling anxious about menopause, it may be comforting to hear that many women experience this time as one of liberation and self-actualization. Knowing the facts about this natural part of every woman’s life is important, and helps make menopause sound less worrying. No matter which age you reach menopause, with the right management and attitude, it needn’t be complicated.
Please note that advice offered by Intimina may not be relevant to your individual case. For specific concerns regarding your health, always consult your physician or other licensed medical practitioners.
Menopause | Canadian Women’s Health Network
What is menopause?
Menopause is the end of menstruation. The word comes from the Greek mens, meaning monthly, and pausis, meaning cessation. Menopause is part of a woman’s natural aging process when her ovaries produce lower levels of the hormones estrogen and progesterone and when she is no longer able to become pregnant.
Unlike a woman’s first menstruation, which starts on a single day, the changes leading up to menopause happen over several years. The average age for menopause is 52. But menopause commonly happens anytime between the ages of 42 and 56.
A woman can say she has begun her menopause when she has not had a period for a full year.
What is ‘perimenopause’?
‘Perimenopause’ refers to the several years before menopause when a woman may begin experiencing the first signs of her menopausal transition. But many people use the term ‘menopause’ for both the perimenopausal years as well as the few years following menopause.
What are the signs of menopause?
Menopause is a natural process that happens to every woman as she grows older, and is not a medical problem, disease or illness. Still, some women may have a hard time because of the changes in hormone levels during menopause.
There are many possible signs of menopause and each woman feels them differently. Most women have no or few menopausal symptoms while some women have many moderate or severe symptoms.
The clearest signs of the start of menopause are irregular periods (when periods come closer together or further apart), and when blood flow becomes lighter or heavier.
Other signs may include some of the following:
- weight gain;
- hot flashes;
- night sweats;
- vaginal dryness;
- joint pain;
- short-term memory problems;
- bowel upset;
- dry eyes;
- itchy skin;
- mood swings; and
- urinary tract infections.
Most of the time, these symptoms will lessen or go away after a woman has finished menopause.
Do all women experience menopause in the same way?
Menopause experiences are different among individual women, and also among women in different cultures and in different parts of the world.
Research has shown that women’s experience of menopause can be related to many things, including genetics, diet, lifestyle and social and cultural attitudes toward older women.
- Japanese women report fewer hot flashes and other symptoms.
- Thai women record a high incidence of headaches.
- Scottish women record fewer severe symptoms.
- Greek women report a high rate of hot flashes.
- Mayan women report no symptoms.
Some scholars wonder if the North American emphasis on youth and lack of respect for older people contributes to a more difficult menopausal transition here.
The typical North American diet, high in saturated fats and sugars, along with our in-active lifestyle and low childbirth rate, may also contribute to the physical complaints common to many North American women at menopause.
What is “induced” menopause?
“Induced”, “sudden” or “surgical” menopause happens when a woman goes through an immediate and premature menopause. This occurs when her ovaries no longer produce the hormones estrogen, progesterone and testosterone.
This may be caused by:
- surgery to remove your ovaries;
- radiation treatment; or
- ovarian malfunction.
Women going through induced menopause may have more severe menopausal symptoms, and are usually treated with hormone therapy.
How should I prepare for menopause?
Menopause is one of women’s many important natural life-stages. For some, it is a challenging period of difficult physical and emotional changes. For others, it is a time of personal growth and renewal. And for many women, it is both at the same time. They don’t call it “Menopausal Zest” for nothing!
Here are some suggestions to help you enjoy your menopausal years to their fullest:
- Learn about menopause through recent books, articles and other reading materials.
- Talk to friends and relatives who have already gone through menopause.
- Join a menopause or midlife support-group in your area.
- Have a nutritious diet and enjoy regular exercise.
- Manage your stress by balancing your work and social life.
- Talk with your health care practitioner about your personal health concerns.
- Know that you have choices and can take charge of your health.
Where can I go for more information?
Reviewed June 2006.
Diagnostics and treatment of menopause in a woman
Perimenopausal period (menopause) – the period of a woman’s life, characterized by natural age-related extinction of the functions of the reproductive system. Includes premenopausal, menopause and 2 years postmenopausal.
Since the average age of menopause is 50 years, premenopause usually begins a little after 40 (average 45 years) and lasts from 4 to 8 years (sometimes 2, sometimes 10).However, age is far from being an indicator here. Sometimes the first symptoms appear even earlier – before 42 years of age (the so-called early or premature menopause) or 40.
It is accompanied by a number of symptoms, the most common of which are a feeling of heat or hot flashes, sweating, irritability, depression, sleep disturbance, dryness, discomfort on the vaginal mucosa, aggravated by urination, sexual intercourse.
Premenopause can be a difficult period in a woman’s life, as the ovaries begin to produce hormones in low amounts, and any hormonal fluctuations are immediately reflected in both appearance and well-being.At this stage, it is important that every woman understands and turns to a doctor in time to provide assistance and adapt to this period.
In premenopausal women and especially at the beginning it is easy to get pregnant – although the ovaries are not so active, they still produce eggs.
Postmenopause – the period after the last menstruation.
Potential consequences of the disease
In addition to the symptoms of perimenopause, more severe symptoms come to the fore at this time, sometimes leading to disability and even death of a woman:
- Decreased bone density.It is manifested by frequent fractures, stoop, problems with the spine;
- Hair loss and fragility;
- Pigmentation and severe aging of the skin;
- Cardiovascular diseases. Atherosclerosis, hypertension, ischemic disease, leading to heart attacks and strokes;
- Impairment of hearing, memory and vision;
- Decreased memory;
- Weakening of the immune system. The immune system is no longer able to fight various infections and viruses;
- Metabolic disorders.The balance of glucose and fats in the blood is disturbed, which leads to obesity, diabetes mellitus, etc.;
- Uterine prolapse, urinary incontinence. Occurs due to weakening of the pelvic floor muscles;
- Constipation. Come from metabolic disorders;
- Dryness of the mucous membranes of the genital tract, discomfort. Urinary tract infections.
Treatment of menopause in Cheboksary
If you need advice and the appointment of competent treatment from an experienced and qualified gynecologist, then sign up for “MEDIK”! You can make an appointment by calling 8 (8352) 23-77-23 or on your own through the MEDIK mobile application.The record is also available on our website in the Personal Account.
90,000 What is menopause? – Melsmon
“There are no incurable diseases, there is a lack of knowledge. And aging is a disease that can be treated .. “
V. I. Vernadsky
The word “climax” in translation from Greek means “step”. And, perhaps, it is very important to treat it in this way – as another step, another height that must be overcome with some effort.It is simply ridiculous to worry about this, but it is very useful to prepare for a new stage of life, you just need to think about how best to enter the time of change. And this applies to both women and men.
There are many definitions and interpretations of this term. The simplest and most understandable sounds like this:
Menopause (Greek klimakter stage; age transition period; synonym: menopause, menopause) is a physiological period of a person’s life, during which, against the background of age-related changes in the body, involutional processes in the reproductive system dominate.
Menopause in women
In terms of the production of female sex hormones, a woman’s entire life is divided into several stages: premenopause (from the moment of the first menstruation to the end of regular menstruation), perimenopause (period before and after menopause), menopause (time of the last menstruation ) and postmenopausal (period from twelve months after menopause to the end of life).
Perimenopause, menopause and postmenopause are conventionally combined into menopause – menopause .
This period begins, on average, 4 years before menopause (average age 45 -47 years) and lasts for 12 months after the cessation of menstruation.
The first sign of perimenopause is changes in the menstrual cycle, both in duration and in the amount of blood loss.
Perimenopause is a time of great hormonal changes in a woman’s body. The level of estrogen – the female sex hormone – begins to fluctuate and decreases steadily.
Menopause is the time of the last natural bleeding (menstruation). This can only be established after 12 months without bleeding. The average age at onset of menopause is 51–53 years, although women who smoke can reach menopause 1.5–2 years earlier.Currently, it has been clearly proven that the time of the onset of menopause is in direct proportion to the initial follicular supply of a woman’s ovaries and the processes of apoptosis that take place in them throughout life, which determines their functional state.
Twelve months after menopause, women enter the postmenopausal period, which lasts up to 65-69 years, gradually moving into old age.
In the climacteric period, the immune defense gradually decreases, the frequency of autoimmune diseases increases , meteorological stability develops (reduced resistance to ambient temperature fluctuations), age-related changes occur in the cardiovascular system. The level of low and very low density lipoproteins, cholesterol, triglycerides and glucose in the blood increases; increased body weight due to hyperplasia of fat cells. As a result of a violation of the functional state of the higher nervous centers against the background of a decrease in the level of estrogen in the body, a complex of vegetative-vascular, mental and metabolic-endocrine disorders often develops, the so-called climacteric syndrome, which is a complication of the natural course of menopause and is observed in 30-60% of women.
Manifestations of climacteric syndrome
are reduced to the appearance of vasomotor and emotional-mental disorders. They are expressed in:
- Hot flashes, excessive sweating, headaches, hypertension or hypotension, chills, heart palpitations, irritability, drowsiness, weakness, anxiety, depression, inattention, forgetfulness.
- Urogenital changes (dryness in the vagina, pain during intercourse, itching and burning, frequent urination) and skin aging (dry and brittle nails, dry and hair loss, wrinkles).
- Late metabolic disorders – osteoporosis and cardiovascular diseases.
Polymorphism of clinical manifestations of climacteric syndrome is often difficult to fit into the given scheme and only complex diagnostics, including the whole range of laboratory, instrumental studies, urological and gynecological examinations, will help to evaluate the whole picture.
With the current development of medicine, it is important to understand that modern diagnostic methods make it possible not only to determine that the female body is beginning to prepare for menopause, but also to reveal a predisposition to certain diseases that can manifest themselves after the onset of menopause.
We must be calm about the fact that after 40 years, at least once a year, we will have to undergo a comprehensive examination. And all the negative aspects inherent in menopause can be corrected with the help of timely hormone therapy, which will not allow the development of age-associated diseases and all the conditions described above.
A gynecologist-endocrinologist will warn you about the onset of menopause and suggest treatment options, taking into account all the characteristics of your body and the symptoms that have already appeared.The main thing is not to postpone the visit to the doctor and subsequently show up regularly with the interval that is necessary specifically in your case and recommended by a specialist.
It is also imperative that simple daily rules are followed. This is not just a whim or a tribute to the healthy lifestyle fashion. This is an elementary culture of life of any modern woman who does not want to grow old, get sick and who wants to remain active and in demand at any age!
At the very beginning, we used the words of Vladimir Ivanovich Vernadsky, a prominent scientist, thinker and public figure of the last century, that old age is just a disease, and if it is a disease, then it can and should be treated!
Prevention of climacteric disorders
You can do a lot for yourself, just slightly adjusting your lifestyle, in connection with the onset of physiological changes:
- Eat a healthy diet. Proper nutrition makes a great contribution to the overall health of a person. During menopause, the diet should contain a variety of fruits, vegetables, and grains. Eliminate fatty, spicy, salty foods from your diet. Reduce consumption of meat, sausages, smoked meats. Take drugs with calcium, vitamin D, drugs with Omega 3 polyunsaturated fatty acids every day (your doctor will help you choose the dosage). Drink alcohol and caffeine in moderation. Do not smoke.
- For menopausal women, it is important to drink plenty of water : experts recommend drinking about 1.5-2 liters per day.Water replenishes the loss of fluid from excessive sweating during hot flashes and helps to reduce their frequency.
- Exercise (at least half an hour a day), try to lead an active lifestyle, this will help reduce hot flushes and is the prevention of osteoporosis. Walk more, walk more, use the stairs, even if there is an elevator.
- Do not wear synthetic fabric . Synthetic fabrics interfere with heat dissipation and impair ventilation, which contributes to overheating and an increase in the frequency of hot flashes.In addition, synthetic clothing absorbs moisture worse and accelerates the appearance of unpleasant sweat odor. It is better to give preference to clothing made of cotton, linen or viscose. These recommendations also apply to bed linen.
- Do not overstrain . Tension, stress, fatigue provoke hot flashes, so a woman during menopause should not take on too many responsibilities. Do not try to do everything at once, alternate work with rest, pay attention to your health.A good night’s sleep is of great importance, it significantly reduces stress levels and helps to reduce the frequency of hot flashes. Learn how to relax properly, for this you can start doing yoga and meditation.
Compliance with these simple rules will allow you to calmly climb the next step, the next height of your life, and then a new life time will begin without any unpleasant sensations or any problems!
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90,000 Understand Menopause | Larimer North County Medical District
Hello Menopause.This often happens when you are juggling many other important life changes: changing careers, going to college for teenagers, and aging parents.
But a better understanding of the symptoms of menopause can help women cope with the transition, stay healthy and strong, and alleviate the confusion that can surround menopause, says Roxanne Slayden, a physician assistant at the Northern Colorado Women’s Clinic.
“It’s nice to remember that menopause is a natural physiological process that every woman goes through.This is the time when our ovaries stop producing eggs, estrogen levels drop, and menstrual cycles become irregular, says Slayden.
Most women enter perimenopause or transition period before menopause at the age of 40. This can last anywhere from four to 10 years. Changes in the menstrual cycle and menstrual cycle are often the first sign, Slideden said. “The time between periods can be longer or shorter, and the discharge can be more intense, lighter, or just smearing.Your periods are also often missed. You can skip cycles for a month or months. ”
Women are completely in menopause when they have not had a menstrual period for 12 consecutive months. “The average age at menopause is 52, but the range could be 40 to 55.”
Life changes, normal aging and stress can easily cause symptoms similar to menopause: weight gain, fatigue, mood swings, irritability, sleep problems and thyroid disease.
“Also remember that every woman is unique and will not have all of the symptoms of menopause. Some may have only one symptom. Some may have 10, ”adds Slayden.
Common symptoms of menopause include hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, irritability, sleep problems, anxiety, depression, vaginal dryness, decreased libido, fatigue, weight gain, foggy thinking, loss of collagen and skin elasticity, changes in hair texture, etc.D. number, headaches, frequent urinary tract infections (UTIs), joint pain, body aches, low endurance and low motivation.
Contrary to popular belief, changes in memory are associated with natural aging, but there is no evidence linking them to menopause, Slayden says. “Some women report blurred thinking and memory problems during menopause. Sleep problems may be affecting the brain. Middle-aged stressors can also cause memory problems. “
Fortunately, women have many options for menopausal symptom relief, including exercise, getting plenty of sleep, eating well, maintaining a healthy weight, reducing stress, and quitting smoking. Avoid or reduce your sugar and alcohol intake to improve sleep.
In addition to lifestyle changes, many treatment options also help relieve symptoms of perimenopause and menopause, such as nutritional supplements, hormone replacement therapy, antidepressants, and other non-hormonal medications.“The first line of treatment should be lifestyle changes / modifications and then medication if symptoms become so unpleasant that they disrupt your normal life,” advises Slayden.
At this stage in life, it is important for women to stay healthy and take care of themselves as well as others, according to Slayden. Relaxation, meditation, yoga, massage, leisurely baths, or slow, deep belly breaths can help reduce hot flashes. Pick something interesting and stay active.
Once upon a time, stigma led women to believe that their quality of life deteriorated after menopause. But now, many women are discovering that menopause is actually the beginning of a strong, confident phase, says Sliden.
“Some of the positives associated with menopause is the feeling of freedom, where you no longer have to worry about birth control, premenstrual symptoms or menstrual problems. Children also get older at this stage in life and you can pursue more professional and personal ambitions.Many women report feeling stronger and more confident. ”
90,000 Living life to the fullest in menopause is possible! uMEDp
The necessity, benefits and risks of hormone replacement therapy were discussed at the symposium “How to improve the quality of life of women in menopause? Is there a time-tested method? ”, Which took place in the framework of the XI All-Russian Scientific Forum“ Mother and Child ”.
Today, almost 30% of women in Russia are at the age of menopause.Experts state: the average age of menopause in Russian women is 51 years, with a life expectancy of 75 years. Thus, a third of her life a woman lives in a state of deficiency of female sex hormones, which is the main source of health problems.
The doctors are concerned about the fact that the period of menopause threatens the deterioration of the woman’s health. At this time, symptoms such as fatigue, loss of libido, and insomnia may appear. With the onset of menopause, “hot flashes”, characterized by a sharp increase in body temperature, are observed in 75% of women.In 30% of women, these symptoms can be pronounced. In addition, a decrease in estrogen levels can lead to the development of serious pathological conditions, fractures caused by osteoporosis, and cardiovascular diseases.
Opening the symposium, Doctor of Medical Sciences, Professor, President of the Russian Association of Gynecologists-Endocrinologists and the National Menopause Association V.P. Smetnik drew the attention of those present to the fact that for Russia the issue of women’s health during menopause is very acute.In our country, there are about 21 million women over the age of 50, of whom nearly 131 thousand people use hormone replacement therapy. The picture is completely different in Europe. For example, in Switzerland, out of 1 million women experiencing menopause, almost 154 thousand receive hormone replacement therapy (HRT).
Why is the share of women in Russia using HRT so small? One of the main reasons, experts say, is the low awareness of women about the possibilities of estrogen deficiency therapy, about the evolution in the treatment of menopausal disorders and about the benefits of treatment with new hormonal drugs.
Until now, when making a decision to take hormones in peri- and postmenopausal women, there are concerns and doubts about possible complications while taking HRT. In order to eliminate the risks in the use of HRT, the decision on the appointment should be made by a qualified doctor, based on the individual characteristics of each woman, and after carrying out the necessary examinations, excluding contraindications.
Separately, the symposium considered the issue of assessing the effectiveness, safety and acceptability of HRT after surgical removal of the uterus – hysterectomy.According to the professor, MD, head. Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology of the Russian Medical Academy of Postgraduate Education N.M. Podzolkova, the age of the onset of menopausal symptoms after a hysterectomy with preservation of the ovaries decreases to 45 years (that is, normally a woman goes into menopause 5 years later – at 50-52 years). Hysterectomy in the reproductive and perimenopausal period, despite the preservation of ovarian function, leads to disruption of fat, carbohydrate and lipid metabolism and increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases.According to scientific research, HRT in such a contingent of women is justified.
Modern research has proven that women who take hormone replacement therapy before the age of 60 live 28-30% longer than those who refuse it. According to V.P. Smetnik, you need to have time to get into the “window” of therapeutic effects – within 10 years after the last menstruation, and best of all in the first 5 years. In some cases, women begin to suffer from the manifestations of climacteric syndrome even earlier, before the end of the last menstruation.They also need help – hormone replacement therapy.
In Russia, HRT drugs have been used for a long time. In particular, 20 years of experience has been accumulated in the use of one of the HRT drugs, which is able not only to effectively stop the symptoms of climacteric syndrome, but also significantly improve the quality of life of a woman, increasing her self-esteem, improving mood and libido, while the drug has a good safety profile.
90,000 Climax is not a sentence! And simply “transitional age”
Climax is a natural period in a woman’s life, during which the extinction of her reproductive function occurs.The average age of menopause (last menstruation) for our country is 48-50 years. And climacteric syndrome can begin to develop long before menopause. Most often women are worried about hot flashes, sweating or chills, facial redness,
dizziness and palpitations, drops in blood pressure. In women of Balzac’s age, mood changes, irritability, headaches appear, conflicts in the family and at work are more frequent. Over time, skin changes, complaints from the genitourinary system, cardiovascular system, osteoporosis may appear.These symptoms can occur in many diseases, therefore, in order to make the correct diagnosis and select an adequate treatment, it is necessary to undergo an examination.
THE MAIN THING – ATTENTION TO… YOURSELF!
Of course, we cannot stop menopause and climacteric syndrome with any medication, but we can alleviate their course, reduce discomfort. To do this, in the premenopausal period and during the menopause itself, it is very useful to follow some very simple rules that will require you to do everything – just basic attention to yourself.
To improve your well-being, a rational daily regimen, moderate physical activity, sleep in a cool room, a diet with limited animal protein and easily digestible carbohydrates are recommended. It is necessary to eat more vegetables, fruits, seafood. Doctors have a large arsenal of drugs for the treatment of climacteric syndrome: herbal, vitamin complexes, hormonal drugs. For the correct selection of treatment, you must consult a doctor.
Obstetrician – gynecologist
Healthcare Institution “22nd City Polyclinic” Antonovich Anna Eduardovna
Menopause, the beginning of a new stage – Gynecological Clinic
How do I know if I am menopause?
Menopause is the final termination of the rule as a consequence of the aging of the ovary.This is retrospective diagnosis , that is, we are talking about menopause when a year has passed since the last menstruation, and you have not had any menstrual bleeding.
Under normal physiological conditions menopause occurs between 48-52 years (average age 50 years ) but the rules may disappear early. Thus, a woman knows that she reached menopause when, at the age of about 50, she did not have a period for a year. It is not necessary to perform any analytics for menopause diagnostics However, in certain situations, we must request this.
When menopause It is presented before the age of 40, we are faced with what was called early menopause , but now it is called primary ovarian failure because it is a complex picture that does not accurately reflect what can happen in these cases. Almost half of these women suddenly regain ovarian function and may even become pregnant spontaneously.
When menopause occurs at the age of 40-45, it is called early menopause and when he does so after 55 years, late menopause.
How does menopause affect my daily life?
La menopause It manifests itself as a series of signs and symptoms that appear in a checkerboard pattern. Short-term changes are the least important in terms of clinical consequences, but those that are more “obvious” affect the quality of life. Changes in the medium to long term have the most serious consequences. They can be facilitated, and some even avoided, if preventive measures , which will be the more effective the sooner we implement them.
In the near future
- Neurovegetative disorders : hot flashes, sweating, palpitations, headaches, dizziness …
- Psychological disorders : irritability, emotional lability (changes in the manifestation of affectivity, such as crying, inappropriate laughter …)
- Genitourinary climacteric syndrome : vaginal dryness, dyspareunia, dysuria, urinary tract infections, urge to urinate…
- Cardiovascular diseases
Menopause cannot be postponed , but in the clinic we can avoid it. When we carry out hormonal treatment, the symptoms disappear, that is, we do not postpone menopause, but yes the symptoms and consequences . Not all women are candidates for this treatment, but it should be done in the absence of contraindications for women under 40.
La postmenopausal is postmenopausal stage . It has a long life span, on average 38 years. This is the stage at which it is necessary to pay special attention to the prevention of diseases such as cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis.
There are two phases: early postmenopause including the first 4 years after menopause and late postmenopause more than 5 years after menopause.
When a woman reaches this stage, the symptoms of menopause decrease or disappear, such as hot flashes.But a decrease in estrogen levels will lead to a decrease in protection from cardiovascular diseases and their risk is equal to that of men.
Postmenopausal women also commonly experience weight gain and bone loss. To control this loss, it is advised to follow a diet rich in calcium and vitamin D. A visit to the gynecologist should be made so that he can determine what tests are needed and what treatment should be given.
Autumn of women’s life
Doctors say that menopause is not the end of life, but the beginning of a new stage for a woman, the passage of which largely depends on herself
In the life of every woman there comes a time associated with the natural hormonal changes in the body.This is a physiological period, during which, against the background of general age-related changes in the body, processes in the reproductive system, characterized by the cessation of first reproductive and then menstrual functions, prevail. This period is called menopause, or menopause, and it is divided into three main stages.
Premenopause – begins on average at 45 years of age. At this time, a gradual extinction of ovarian function occurs, conception becomes problematic, but the risk of unwanted pregnancy still exists.There is a gradual increase in the intervals between menstruation, a reduction in their duration and a decrease in blood loss. Premenopause lasts from the onset of irregular periods until the last menstrual period.
Menopause is the year following the last menstrual period. On average, menopause occurs at the age of 50-53.
Postmenopause is the period of life after menopause.
Against the background of a progressive deficiency of sex hormones, the following three groups of symptoms arise:
1) Early symptoms of menopause are vasomotor: hot flashes, excessive sweating, headaches, hypotension or hypertension, chills, palpitations; emotional and mental: irritability, insomnia, drowsiness, weakness, anxiety, depression, forgetfulness, decreased libido.
2) Medium-term symptoms appear 3-5 years after the onset of menopause and appear in the form of urogenital disorders – vaginal dryness, pain during sexual intercourse, itching and burning in the genital area, cystalgia, urinary incontinence. The condition of the skin and its appendages changes, wrinkles, brittle nails, hair loss appear.
3) Late symptoms of menopause – metabolic disorders: osteoporosis (leaching of calcium from bones, leading to an increase in their fragility and, as a result, joint pain, fractures, curvature of the spine), cardiovascular diseases, Al’s disease zheimer.
Menopause is not the same for all women. The course of menopause is influenced by the conditions of life, the nature of work, the state of somatic and gynecological health, the emotional mood of a woman. If in your youth you were faced with a violation of the cycle, pre-menstrual syndrome, infertility, be prepared for the fact that your menopause may be difficult to pass. Smoking brings the onset of menopause closer. This conclusion was made by a group of American doctors, who, in particular, found that smoking more than 15 cigarettes a day reduces reproductive age by about 2 years.Early menopause can also be promoted by poor quality and (attention to ladies, constantly dieting!) Insufficient nutrition. But if a woman has been using hormonal contraceptives for a long time, then menopause, on the contrary, comes a little later.
A doctor will help you
In whatever form the menopause proceeds, you should not focus your attention on unpleasant sensations. It must be remembered that menopause is not a disease, it is a completely natural physiological process, moreover, temporary, and painful manifestations can not only be weakened, but in some cases can be completely eliminated with the help of a gynecologist.
Depending on the severity of climacteric symptoms, the gynecologist selects an individual complex therapy for each woman. Methods for the treatment of climacteric syndrome include hormonal, non-hormonal and non-pharmacological agents.
Menopausal hormone therapy (MHT) is the main most effective treatment. The modern pharmaceutical industry produces drugs for MHT in the form of tablets, skin patches and gels, vaginal suppositories and creams.Drugs that are correctly selected with the help of a doctor actively counteract the aging process, allowing you to maintain health and performance. Naturally, all this will increase the quality of life of a modern woman in adulthood.
For the appointment of MHT, the gynecologist conducts the specification of personal and family anamnesis, general, clinical and laboratory examination (blood clotting test, lipidogram, cytological examination of smears, ultrasound of the pelvic organs, mammography), gynecological examination.The choice of the drug requires a thorough assessment by the doctor of the indications and contraindications for the appointment of MHT, an individual approach to each patient.
Hormonal drugs should not be taken: for breast cancer; endometrial cancer, vaginal bleeding of unknown etiology; acute thrombosis and thromboembolic conditions; uncontrolled arterial hypertension; acute hepatitis; intolerance to the components of the drug, cutaneous porphyria.
If there are contraindications to MHT or refusal to use hormonal drugs, the gynecologist will offer alternative ways to correct symptoms, including drugs, herbal preparations containing phytoestrogens, acupuncture, psychotherapy.
Timely “prevention” of inevitable age-related changes can alleviate a number of negative symptoms, and often completely save women from them. Here are some recommendations that will help you “survive” menopause with the least difficulty:
– regularly check the level of cholesterol in the blood – this will help reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases, often occurring or exacerbated during this period;
– for the same purpose, regularly (at least once a week) measure blood pressure in the morning and evening;
– do a blood test for sugar content to establish if you have latent diabetes;
– undergo a study of bone density in order to detect osteoporosis at an early stage;
– visit a gynecologist for a general examination and ultrasound examination of the reproductive organs;
– make a mammogram and monthly independently monitor the condition of the mammary glands;
– watch your weight.It is necessary to abandon the rather widespread idea of losing weight, remembering that the fat layer plays a major role in the production of estrone, providing the prevention of many menopausal disorders. It is advisable to use legumes, bread with whole grains of wheat, sunflower seeds, berries, soy products rich in phytoestrogens. The diet should include a sufficient amount of vegetables, fruits, dairy products, vegetable fats, lean chicken, turkey, fish. These products provide the body’s need for vitamins, hormones and trace elements (calcium, phosphorus).A woman should not abuse alcohol, coffee, hot food spices;
– Quit smoking. If you cannot do this, then at least limit the number of cigarettes smoked;
– if you haven’t played sports until now, it’s time to start. However, teach that the loads should be very dosed. The first time classes are best carried out under the supervision of a specialist. Swimming, walking, massage will be of great benefit.
Do not lose your mood
The psychological state during menopause is no less important than the physical one.At this age, many serious changes occur – from a sharp increase in the external signs of aging to a violation of the usual way of life (a typical example: children grow up and leave the parental home), which can be difficult to accept.