Health

What Causes Menopause?

Menopause is the cessation of menstrual periods due to the decline of ovarian function. It usually occurs between the ages of 45 and 55, but it can vary depending on individual factors. Menopause can have significant effects on various aspects of health, such as cardiovascular, bone, urinary, and psychological well-being.

Natural Menopause

Natural menopause is the result of the gradual depletion of ovarian follicles and eggs, which leads to lower levels of estrogen and progesterone. These hormones regulate the menstrual cycle and fertility. As women age, the number and quality of eggs decrease, and the ovaries become less responsive to follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH), which stimulate ovulation. Eventually, ovulation ceases, and menstrual periods stop.

The process of natural menopause can be divided into three stages:

Perimenopause: This is the transition period before menopause, when menstrual cycles become irregular and symptoms such as hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, vaginal dryness, and insomnia may occur. Perimenopause can last from a few months to several years.

Induced Menopause

Induced menopause is caused by medical interventions that affect ovarian function or remove ovarian tissue. These include:

Induced menopause can cause more severe symptoms than natural menopause because of the sudden loss of hormones. Women who undergo induced menopause may also have a higher risk of osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease than women who experience natural menopause.

Conclusion

Menopause is a natural phenomenon that marks the end of a woman’s reproductive years. It can be caused by natural or induced factors that affect ovarian function. Menopause can have various physical and psychological effects on women’s health and quality of life. Therefore, it is important for health care practitioners to provide adequate information and support to women who are going through this transition.

Menopause is a complex process that affects women’s health and well-being. If you are a healthcare provider who wants to understand more about menopause, you can read our article Pathophysiology of Menopause, Signs and Diagnosis and explore our training courses for practitioners working with women in primary care.

References:

Menopause – Wikipedia. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Menopause

Menopause – Symptoms and causes – Mayo Clinic. (2023, May 25). Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/menopause/symptoms-causes/syc-20353397

Menopause: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, and More – Healthline. (2018, January 17). Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/health/menopause

Menopause – symptoms and treatments | healthdirect. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.healthdirect.gov.au/menopause

 

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