Menopausal Symptoms Can Last 10 Years Or More

Woman with headache

Every woman over a certain age, uh hum understands what menopause is but its symptoms can be many and varied There are some common side effects to reaching what is a normal and natural time of one’s life.

It happens to us all on average around the age 50 and is most common anywhere from 45 to 55 – confirmed when 12 consecutive periods have been missed. The period leading to the end of fertility is the premenopause.  There have been more interesting, very recent studies done with survey groups on the subject…

 Menopause-related hot flashes and night sweats aren’t a short-term problem. More than half of women experience these unpleasant change-of-life symptoms for seven years or more, a new study finds.

“Women should not be surprised if their hot flashes last a number of years,” said lead researcher Nancy Avis, a professor of social sciences and health policy at Wake Forest School of Medicine in Winston-Salem, N.C.

Four out of five women experience hot flashes and night sweats in the years before their periods cease, leaving some with almost 12 years of unpleasant symptoms, the study found. And women who could pinpoint their final period reported symptoms persisted for an average of 4.5 years afterward.

The findings, published online Feb. 16 in JAMA Internal Medicine, suggest a need for “more research on safe and effective ways to relieve these symptoms,” Avis said. Menopausal symptoms affect quality of life, disrupt sleep and result in worse physical health, she and her colleagues noted.

Menopause — which is confirmed when a woman’s periods have ceased for 12 consecutive months — occurs most often between ages 45 and 55, according to the North American Menopause Society. The symptoms women experience are related to lower levels of estrogen and other hormones. Common among these symptoms are hot flashes — quick feelings of heat sometimes accompanied by sweating.

Is hormone replacement therapy a good option?
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