Early Metamorphosis © lynette sheppard

Early Metamorphosis © lynette sheppard

This guest post by Dr. Andre Berger demystifies symptoms and outlines help for when the Big M comes early. I know several women who started menopause in their late 20’s  / early 30’s. If you think the Change is body and mind boggling when you are 50, think what it might be if you were a younger adult. I’m sure you’ll find it informative.

The average age for the onset of menopause is approximately 51 years of age. However, some women may experience menopause before the age of 40. This early onset can be due to genetics, medical procedures, illness, or causes that are unknown. Whether it is caused naturally or induced, it is called “premature” menopause.

Premature Menopause Symptoms and Treatment

Women undergoing premature menopause will experience symptoms such as mood swings, hot flashes or other symptoms associated with menopause. However, those going through premature menopause often face additional emotional and physical concerns. For example, since menopause signals the end of fertility, women who want to get pregnant may face difficulty doing so.

Symptoms of Premature Menopause

The sign is the same as natural menopause and can include which is 12 consecutive months with no period.

Accompanying symptoms are caused by the decrees of estrogen and may include:

Vaginal dryness
Bladder irritability
Emotional changes such as depression and mood swings
Dry skin, mouth or eyes
Decreased sex drive
Difficulty with sleeping

In addition to these symptoms, if you are under the age of 40 and have any of the following, you should consult a physician to determine if you are actually experiencing premature menopause

Undergone radiation or chemotherapy
You or a family member have an autoimmune disorder
Your mother or sister went through premature menopause

Premature Menopause Diagnosis

You will likely undergo a physical exam plus blood and diagnosing testing to exclude any other medical conditions, including thyroid disease or pregnancy. You may also undergo tests that measure your estradiol, progesterone, cortisone, and testosterone levels.

The most important tests is a blood test that measures the Follicle-Stimulating Hormone (FSH) that signals your ovaries to produce estrogen and Luteinizing Hormone (LH). When the ovaries slow the production of estrogen, the follicle-stimulating hormone levels rise. If these levels rise above a certain level, this is a good indication that you are in menopause.

Premature Menopause Treatment

Premature menopause can be treated and managed with methods used for natural menopause. However, women dealing with infertility issues caused by premature menopause should discuss their options with a reproductive specialist.

Women experiencing premature menopause are experiencing lower estrogen levels that can lead to overall health changes. Additionally, these women may be at higher risks for conditions such as osteoporosis, heart disease, as well as increased risk for colon and ovarian cancer, cataract formation, gum disease and tooth loss.

If you feel you are experiencing premature menopause, consult a physician.

Dr. Andre Berger is the founder of Rejuvalife Vitality Institute in Beverly Hills, CA, and the author of the acclaimed book “The Beverly Hills Ant-Aging Prescription. Dr. Berger is Secretary of the California Academy of Cosmetic Surgery, has been board certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine for 20 years and is a diplomate of the American Board of Anti-Aging and Regenerative Medicine, and the American Board of Holistic and Integrative Medicine.