Posts Tagged ‘Menopause’
The stage of life between a young woman’s fertility, and the menopause of a woman’s later years is called peri-menopause. Peri-menopause begins in a woman’s late 30s to early 40s and can last 3-15 years. According to Drs. Fox, Greebon, Monier, Eisenberg and Newton, Plano, TX gynecologists that make up the Women’s Specialists of Plano (972.379.2416), “This number is different for every woman, but one fact that remains the same is that during this phase, undesirable effects will take place to a woman’s body.”
Peri-menopause is onset by the fluctuations of the female hormones estrogen and progesterone. These normal hormone changes are the result of the ongoing decrease of eggs inside a woman’s ovaries. As these eggs decrease, there is no more cyclic estrogen and progesterone production. The symptoms a woman will experience during due to these biological changes most often reflect peri-menopause. The most obvious sign that a woman may be in peri-menopause is the change in her menstrual cycle. It is important to highlight what a normal period looks like for most women:
- The start of one period to the start of the next should be at least 21 days
- Periods should last less than 10 days
- There is no spotting in between periods
- Periods should be no further apart than 90 days
Because all women’s cycles are unique, peri-menopausal bleeding changes will be unique to each woman. Some women notice a very heavy period one-month, followed by the absence of a period the next month. Others may experience more frequent periods that appear less than the average 28-32 days apart. Some woman may only spot during their period for several months, while others notice heavier bleeding throughout. Only you will know if your cycle has changed. The sporadic distribution of estrogen and progesterone is to blame for menopausal bleeding changes and is inevitable.
The natural hormonal imbalance that takes place inside of a woman’s body may cause other undesirable symptoms. Some of the symptoms of peri-menopause include:
- Hot flashes
- Sleep problems (which affects 75% of all peri-menopausal women)
- Mood changes
- Vaginal dryness
- Bladder problems
- Decreased fertility
- Increase in bad cholesterol
- Loss of bone mass
- Weight gain
Other common symptoms of peri-menopause include bouts of depression; it is also very common for a woman in these years to suffer from a loss in libido and decreased sexual arousal.
The Transition from Peri-Menopause to Menopause
Every woman is born with a certain amount of eggs. She will not produce anymore throughout her life. As a woman ages, so do the ovaries which is where the eggs reside. During pre-menopause the fluctuation of hormones within a woman’s body begin to make it difficult for the eggs to reach the point of ovulation, causing the above mentioned symptoms for a peri-menopausal woman. As it becomes increasingly difficult for an egg to reach ovulation, ovulation begins to cease. After an egg is no longer able to reach ovulation at all, ovulation ceases completely and so does a woman’s cycle. It is at this time that a woman’s transition from peri-menopause to menopause is complete.
It is important to remember that peri-menopause is the stage before menopause and does not mean that you have crossed over the bridge. A woman in peri-menopause has a decreased likelihood of getting pregnant, but it is still possible. A woman is not considered menopausal until she has been without a cycle for a full 12 months. If you are peri-menopausal and aspire to have a child, talk to your doctor about your options.
Peri-menopause shows itself differently in every woman. Some may find it alarmingly obvious that their body is changing, while others may soar through peri-menopause into menopause without ever noticing a single hot flash. However it is important to note that if you are noticing that the symptoms of peri-menopause are beginning to affect parts of your daily life you need to speak with your doctor. He or she will discuss your options with you and help you to find comfort during this transition.
There are several approaches to easing the transition from peri-menopause to menopause; only your doctor will be able to decide what option is best for you. Some methods that women have found helpful to help minimize the symptoms of peri-menopause include:
- Low dose birth control, for the relief of hot flashes and the changes associated with menopausal bleeding.
- Exercise, which is good for your health and known to help a woman receive better rest.
- Vaginal lubricants and sex therapy, to help recover the loss of libido.
- A diet full of calcium, to help protect against the loss of bone mass.
- Anti-depressants, to help control the mood swings and bouts of depression.
The Women’s Specialists of Plano in Plano, Texas include Dr. Murray Fox, Dr. Daryl Greebon, Dr. Jules Monier, Dr. Dennis Eisenberg, and Dr. Jennifer Newton. They offer adolescent gynecology, obstetrics and treat women even past the menopausal years. As a woman’s body goes through the myriad of changes from teenage to menopause, it’s important to have a trusted resource to answer questions and receive regular well checks. Peri-menopause, while it can be a troublesome condition for many women, is treatable on some levels. Contact your physician today to learn more.
Understanding Uterine Fibroids
Author: Dr Daryl Greebon
Understanding Uterine Fibroids
Many women experience these non-cancerous tumors, which can require hysterectomies
A lot of women wonder just exactly what uterine fibroids are. They’re usually non-cancerous tumors that develop within the uterus, and 15-20 percent of women in their reproductive years and 30-40 percent of women older than 30 may suffer from uterine fibroids.
Why should women know about fibroids?
Uterine fibroids are the most prevalent pelvic tumor, but the cause of uterine fibroid tumors is unknown. Not all women with fibroids experience symptoms; however some women ache and have significant menstrual bleeding. In addition, fibroids can place pressure on the bladder, triggering frequent urination.
Fibroids may grow as a single growth or in groups. Fibroids vary in size from very small to eight inches in diameter. The growth of a fibroid typically depends on the hormone estrogen. Once a woman develops a fibroid, the fibroid usually continues to grow throughout her menstruation years.
Women who do not experience symptoms associated with their fibroids may not require treatment. Fibroids may even shrink after menopause, but if heavy bleeding or pain occurs, a hysterectomy may be required. Uterine fibroids are the main reason hysterectomies are performed.
What is a hysterectomy?
A hysterectomy involves surgically removing the uterus, and sometimes the cervix and/or ovaries and fallopian tubes are also removed.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, after cesarean section, hysterectomy is the second most frequently performed major surgical procedure for women of reproductive age in the United States. Approximately 600,000 hysterectomies are performed annually in the U.S., and an estimated 20 million U.S. women have had a hysterectomy.
Although some women are wary of having surgery to relieve symptoms because of the down time they may experience, new technology is available that enables the removal of uterine fibroids and hysterectomies to be performed less invasively, leading to shorter hospital stays. For hysterectomies that may be difficult to perform as a vaginal procedure and would otherwise require an abdominal hysterectomy, the “da Vinci® Surgical System” offers an alternative.
This new robotic technology offers numerous potential benefits over traditional surgery, including less pain and scarring, less risk of infection, and faster recovery. It also may decrease the risk of blood loss that can occur during a hysterectomy. This new technology is available to Collin County and other area residents at Baylor Regional Medical Center at Plano, located near President George Bush Turnpike and Preston Road.
About the Author:
A member of the Baylor Regional Medical Center at Plano medical staff, Daryl Greebon, M.D., gynecologist, graduated from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School. He went on to serve his internship and residency at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. Dr. Greebon is a board certified OBGYN practicing with Women’s Specialists of Plano. www.obgynplano.com