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Can You Get Menopause At 17

What Are The Symptoms Of Premature Menopause

Diagnosed With Early Menopause at 15 | This Morning

Symptoms of premature menopause are often the same as those experienced by women undergoing natural menopause and may include:

  • Irregular or missed periods
  • Periods that are heavier or lighter than usual
  • Hot flashes

These symptoms are a sign that the ovaries are producing less estrogen.

Along with the above symptoms, some women may experience:

At What Age Do Most Women Reach Menopause

The medical definition of menopause is no menstrual bleeding for a year, according to Lauren Streicher, MD, a clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology and the medical director of the Northwestern Center for Menopause and the Northwestern Center for Sexual Medicine in Chicago.

Most women experience menopause between age 40 and 58, and the average age at menopause is 51, according to the North American Menopause Society.

Many women are surprised when they go through menopause in their forties because they think theyre too young, but its not unusual, says Dr. Streicher.

I Put The Symptoms Down To Depression

41-year-old Lou first noticed symptoms about 8 months ago but says: “looking back, I think it’s probably been the last two years. My mum went through an early menopause at 39, but I didn’t think it would happen to me so I just put the symptoms down to depression, and so did my doctor.”

After the antidepressants prescribed by her GP made no difference, Lou had what she describes as a light bulb moment. “I went to see another doctor and said ‘I think these are menopausal symptoms’. She laughed and said, ‘No, you’re far too young’, but I insisted on having a blood test and it came back that I was in the menopausal range,” Lou says.

For her, the symptoms so far have been mostly emotional, “like a rage that I’ve never experienced before I’m very emotionally unstable and get mad about the littlest things,” she says. “I get hot at night too, and my joints are really stiff. If I’ve been sitting down for a long time, when I get up I’m like an old lady.”

Though she jokes that her inexplicable rage has been worse for her husband, Lou says the experience has really taken its toll on her. “It’s really hard because I’m trying to hide it, and it’s not talked about. You’re just expected to get on with it,” she says.

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Fertility In The Aging Male

Unlike the early fertility decline seen in women, a mans decrease in sperm characteristics occurs much later. Sperm quality deteriorates somewhat as men get older, but it generally does not become a problem before a man is in his 60s. Though not as abrupt or noticeable as the changes in women, changes in fertility and sexual functioning do occur in men as they grow older. Despite these changes, there is no maximum age at which a man cannot father a child, as evidenced by men in their 60s and 70s conceiving with younger partners. As men age, their testes tend to get smaller and softer, and sperm morphology and motility tend to decline. In addition, there is a slightly higher risk of gene defects in their sperm. Aging men may develop medical illnesses that adversely affect their sexual and reproductive function. Not all men experience significant changes in reproductive or sexual functioning as they age, especially men who maintain good health over the years. If a man does have problems with libido or erections, he should seek treatment through his primary care provider and/or urologist. Decreased libido may be related to low levels of testosterone.

Ethnic Variation In Perimenopause Age

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At present, this is the first assessment of the age of perimenopause onset in a multi-ethnic sample. This study has identified a significantly earlier perimenopause onset in women of Hispanic descent compared to women of Caucasian, African-American, Chinese, and Japanese descent. Hispanics experience perimenopause approximately 2 years earlier, which suggests that changes in the reproductive systems are still taking place and that menopause has not stopped evolving separately in each population. While this result may be suspect because of small sample size and heterogeneity among samples originating from different Central American countries, as we show below, other studies have reported similar results.

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Responses To Loss Of Fertility

For some women, early or premature menopause can take away the possibility of becoming a mother. Some women have said, ‘I wasn’t sure if I even wanted children’, or, ‘I didn’t know if I wanted more children’, but when the power to make that decision is taken away, it can seem unfair. Early or premature menopause can mean the longed-for role of motherhood might not happen or, if it happens, it may not be in the way you anticipated. How this feels and the impact it has will depend on your individual circumstances, support networks and coping skills.

Some women with early or premature menopause feel they have to take on a role they did not expect until they were in their 50s that of a menopausal woman. They might even experience menopause before their mother.

Sometimes we have many roles, which we overlook when we focus strongly on wanting to fulfil one particular one. Some women forget they are also partners, daughters, sisters, friends, aunties, granddaughters, workers, neighbours, caregivers. Thinking about these other roles does not necessarily take away all the pain of loss, but it can help to shift the focus.

There are also other constructive ways to think about your role in life. For example, if you think your role is to be a mother, explore the steps you can take to achieve this perhaps donor eggs or adoption are options. It can be helpful to seek counselling to help you with your decision-making.

Common Diet Hailed As Worlds Best May Harm Your Fertility Experts Warn

Thrown into premature menopause, Gallagher, 16, suffered an auto-immune disease in which antibodies attacked her ovaries. Doctors say she has lost more than half her egg follicles over the past few months.

In a bid to salvage the precious cells, a top Manhattan fertility specialist performed an urgent surgery Thursday in a childrens wing of Westchester Medical Center.

Dr. Kutluk Oktay removed two-thirds of the outer layer of Gallaghers right ovary, where microscopic eggs are stored. The tissue will be cut into pieces and frozen until shes an adult and ready to become a mom and then transplanted back.

Ive always loved kids. I definitely want to have kids when Im older, said Gallagher, who lives in Pompton Plains, NJ. A high-school junior, she plans to become a nurse or child psychologist.

While ovarian tissue is frozen for women with cancer before they undergo chemotherapy, Gallaghers surgery is a first for anyone in the midst of autoimmune ovarian failure, Oktay said.

Normally, young women are diagnosed with the disease after all their eggs have been destroyed.

You never catch it when its happening because it happens really fast in a matter of months, said Oktay, who is also a New York Medical College professor and pioneered ovary-freezing and transplantation.

We were lucky to catch Stephanie at this stage, he said.

Of four patients who had ovarian tissue replaced and wanted to get pregnant, three had babies, and two are trying, he said.

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When It Comes To Menopause There Are No Awkward Or Ridiculous Questions

Menopause can often be very readily dismissed as being simply a hot flash or two. It is so much more, but a severe lack of understanding and awareness can diminish the experience of anyone going through menopause. This can result in questions not being asked, limiting the possibility of making informed choices. When it comes to menopause, there are no awkward or ridiculous questions. Learning about menopause is critical. Always ask.

Dr Caoimhe Hartley founded Menopause Health in 2021 to help women access the best advice and care throughout menopause. Dedicated to womens health, Dr Hartley is conscious of the difficulties women experience in understanding and navigating their menopause journey. Dr Deirdre Lundy from the Bray Womens Health Centre is a specialist in womens health and oversees menopause training for Irish GPs at the Irish College of General Practitioners.

They respond here to some of our concerns about menopause.

Im 49 but dont feel menopausal. Does every woman get menopause symptoms?

The majority of women will experience some perimenopausal or menopausal symptoms, says Dr Hartley. It can affect their mood, their sleep, or physical symptoms such as hot flashes or night sweats. For some women, it may be vaginal dryness or bladder symptoms. The bone density loss which happens when our oestrogen production falls at menopause is, for the most part, silent.

My body aches. Is this a sign of menopause?

My symptoms are relentless. What can I do?

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Emotional Impact Of Early Or Premature Menopause

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Premature menopause can be emotionally devastating. Some of the common issues women may face include:

  • grief at the prospect of not having children
  • fear of ‘growing old before their time’
  • concern that their partner wont find them sexually attractive anymore
  • self-esteem problems.

Psychological counselling and support groups may help women come to terms with their experience of early or premature menopause.

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Diagnosis Of Premature Or Early Menopause

Premature and early menopause is diagnosed using a number of tests including:

  • medical history, family history and medical examination
  • investigations to rule out other causes of amenorrhoea , such as pregnancy, extreme weight loss, other hormone disturbances and some diseases of the reproductive system
  • investigations into other conditions associated with premature or early menopause, such as autoimmune diseases
  • genetic tests to check for the presence of genetic conditions associated with premature or early menopause
  • blood tests to check hormone levels.

What Causes Postmenopausal Bleeding

Vaginal bleeding during postmenopause isn’t a normal side effect of decreasing hormone levels. In some cases, the dryness in your vagina could cause some light bleeding or spotting after sex. In other cases, it could indicate a condition like endometrial hyperplasia or uterine fibroids, infections like endometritis, or cancer. Contact your healthcare provider if you experience any vaginal bleeding so you can be evaluated.

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How Do You Know You’re In Postmenopause

Your healthcare provider will be able to tell you if you’re in postmenopause based on your symptoms and how long it’s been since your last menstrual period. In some cases, your healthcare provider will take a blood sample and check your hormone levels to confirm you’ve gone through menopause. Remember, you’re not considered to be through menopause until it’s been over one year since youve had a period.

What Is Premature Ovarian Failure

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Early menopause can happen naturally if a womans ovaries stop making normal levels of certain hormones, particularly the hormone oestrogen.

This is sometimes called premature ovarian failure, or primary ovarian insufficiency.

The cause of premature ovarian failure is often unknown, but in some women it may be caused by:

  • chromosome abnormalities such as in women with Turner syndrome
  • an autoimmune disease where the immune system starts attacking body tissues
  • certain infections, such as tuberculosis, malaria and mumps but this is very rare

Premature ovarian failure can sometimes run in families. This might be the case if any of your relatives went through the menopause at a very young age .

I didnt realise how sad it would make me. Now that my friends have started having children, I find myself distancing myself from them.

Its not because of anything they have done and I dont mean to but its hard seeing what I could have had.

I was invited to a friends baby shower but I broke down on the way there. I dont want to upset them but it is difficult for me to come to terms with.

She has also found talking about her condition to be difficult as she believes there is still a stigma around infertility.

She says: I know some people have strong opinions about IVF and making babies that way.

Some people say you are playing God. I do wish we were more open to talking about fertility issues.

I think there are lots of people who suffer in silence.

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Symptoms Of Premature And Early Menopause

The symptoms of early menopause are the same as for menopause at the typical age and can include:

  • menstrual cycle changes, including changes to the usual bleeding pattern, particularly irregular bleeding
  • hot flushes
  • viral infections the evidence is inconclusive, but it is thought that a viral infection, such as mumps or cytomegalovirus, could trigger premature menopause in some women.
  • How Is Early Menopause Treated Or Managed

    Early menopause generally doesnt require treatment. However, there are treatment options available to help manage the symptoms of menopause or conditions related to it. They can help you deal with changes in your body or lifestyle more easily.

    Premature menopause, however, is often treated since it occurs at such an early age. This helps support your body with the hormones that would normally be made until you reach the age of natural menopause.

    The most common treatment includes hormone replacement therapy . Systemic hormone therapy can prevent many common menopausal symptoms. Or you may take vaginal hormone products, usually in low doses, to help with vaginal symptoms.

    HRT does have risks though. It can increase your chances of heart disease, stroke, or breast cancer.

    Talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits to your individual care before starting HRT. Lower doses of hormones may decrease your risk.

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    Fertility In The Aging Female

    A womans best reproductive years are in her 20s. Fertility gradually declines in the 30s, particularly after age 35. Each month that she tries, a healthy, fertile 30-year-old woman has a 20% chance of getting pregnant. That means that for every 100 fertile 30-year-old women trying to get pregnant in 1 cycle, 20 will be successful and the other 80 will have to try again. By age 40, a womans chance is less than 5% per cycle, so fewer than 5 out of every 100 women are expected to be successful each month.

    Women do not remain fertile until menopause. The average age for menopause is 51, but most women become unable to have a successful pregnancy sometime in their mid-40s. These percentages are true for natural conception as well as conception using fertility treatment, including in vitro fertilization . Although stories in the news media may lead women and their partners to believe that they will be to able use fertility treatments such as IVF to get pregnant, a womans age affects the success rates of infertility treatments. The age-related loss of female fertility happens because both the quality and the quantity of eggs gradually decline.

    Hot Flashes And Night Sweats

    Skin and Hair Changes During Menopause

    Estrogen deficiency throws off how the brain regulates body temperature, and this may lead to hot flashes. A hot flash is a sudden, intense feeling of heat or burning in the face, neck, and chest, often accompanied by redness.

    A night sweat refers to a hot flash that occurs during sleep. Night sweats can negatively impact your sleep cycle, which may lead to tiredness during the day.

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    What Other Factors Influence When Perimenopause Starts Or When A Woman Reaches Menopause

    New research published online on April 12 in Menopause, the journal of NAMS, looked at the various factors that may affect the age when natural menopause occurs.

    They found that there are factors that do seem predictive of when a woman will approach menopause, such as higher estradiol and follicle-stimulating hormone levels, which weve known for a while,” says Streicher. Irregular menstrual bleeding and hot flashes were also indicators of earlier menopause, she adds.

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    One new finding uncovered in the research was around alcohol consumption. The authors observed that participants tended to increase their alcohol consumption when approaching menopause, making it a potential clue that the change was coming.

    That makes sense, says Streicher. This can be a time of added stress for women, and we know that any stressful situation can cause someone to drink more, she says.

    Although this study didnt find a strong association with smoking, other research has indicated that smoking is related to early onset of menopause, says Streicher.

    What Happens After Menopause

    Will the hot flashes, mood swings, and other symptoms of menopause come to a halt when your periods are finally finished? Find out what to expect in the years after menopause.

    Though you may have some idea of whats in store for you as you head toward menopause, the stage of life when the ovaries stop producing eggs and menstrual cycles dwindle, you may not quite know what to expect when your periods are officially over.

    A woman is medically defined as being in menopause when she has not had a menstrual cycle for at least 12 months, says Kevin Audlin, MD, a gynecologist at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore.

    At that point, the transition into your non-child-bearing years is complete.

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    Can Early Menopause Contribute To Other Conditions

    Infertility is often the most obvious concern when you start menopause 10 or more years early. Yet, there are other health concerns.

    A steady stream of estrogen to your tissues has many uses. Estrogen increases good HDL cholesterol and decreases bad LDL cholesterol. It also relaxes blood vessels and prevents bones from thinning.

    Losing estrogen earlier than normal can increase your risk of:

    Discuss your concerns about these symptoms with your doctor. Because of these risks, women who enter menopause early are often prescribed hormone replacement therapy.

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