Over the years we’ve fielded scores of questions from women regarding the perimenopausal transition and menopause. The information one woman needs varies considerably from the next, as there is such a wide spectrum of changes women undergo.

Because we understand this variation of experience, we try to anticipate our readers’ and patients’ questions and share our thoughts on matters with you. Each one of us is unique, but with years of counseling women about menopause behind us, we see common threads. Your questions have prompted us to ask many of our own, and we all learn from this exchange! Here are some of the classics.

1) My hormone tests all returned “normal,” so why don’t I feel that way?

2) My doctor says I’m not menopausal. So now what?

3) What is post-menopausal bleeding, and how does it differ from the irregular bleeding common in perimenopause?

4) I recently stopped estrogen replacement — why am I losing so much hair?

5) Just how hot is a hot flash?

6) How can I help my husband understand what I’m going through?

7) Are herbal alternatives safe to use for menopausal symptoms?

8) Can menopause be delayed?

9) Can I delay menopause to preserve my fertility?

10) Can hormone replacement therapy (HRT) stop menopause from happening?

11) If my periods stop during chemotherapy, am I in menopause?

12) How do I prevent growing facial hair in menopause?

13) Is menopausal hair loss permanent?

14) If I’m on birth control Pills, will I go through menopause?

15) Will I ever enjoy sex again?

16) Is there any way to predict when I’ll go through menopause?

17) Is there a difference between hot flashes and night sweats?

References

16) Is there any way to predict when I’ll go through menopause?

1 Page, J. 2007. Menopause at 30 for millions in poverty. Doctors identify malnutrition link. Problem greater in rural areas. URL: http://www.commondreams.org/headlines07/0123-03.htm (accessed 12.14.2009).

  Kok, H., et al. 2007. Genetic studies to identify genes underlying menopausal age. Hum. Reprod. Update, 11 (5), 483–493. URL: http://humupd.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/full/11/5/483 (accessed 01.07.2010).

2 Dellapiane, B. 2009. Early menopause: An Italian test to predict it. URL: http://bridgestoitaly.ning.com/profiles/blogs/early-menopause-an-italian (accessed 02.17.2010).

3 Prins, G. 2009. Estrogen imprinting: When your epigenetic memories come back to haunt you. Endocrinol., 149 (12), 5919–5921. URL: http://endo.endojournals.org/cgi/content/full/149/12/5919 (accessed 02.24.2010).

17) Is there a difference between hot flashes and night sweats?

1 Gerber, L., et al. 2007. Hot flashes are associated with increased ambulatory systolic blood pressure. Menopause, 14 (2), 308–315. URL (abstract): http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17213753 (accessed 05.04.2010).

2 Thurston, R., et al. 2008. Hot flashes and subclinical cardiovascular disease: Findings from the study of Women’s Health Across the Nation. Circulation, 118 (12), 1234–1240. URL: http://circ.ahajournals.org/cgi/content/full/118/12/1234 (accessed 05.04.2010).

3 Svartberg, J., et al. 2009. Vasomotor symptoms and mortality: The Rancho Bernardo Study. Menopause, 16 (5), 888–891. URL (abstract): http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19421076 (accessed 05.04.2010).

4 Thurston, R., et al. 2010. History of hot flashes and aortic calcification among postmenopausal women. Menopause, 17 (2), 256–261. URL: http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/718377 (accessed 05.06.2010).

5 Gallicchio L, et al. 2010. Hot flashes and blood pressure in midlife women. Maturitas, 65 (1), 69–74. URL (abstract): http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19945805 (accessed 05.04.2010).