Managing Menopause by Combining Evidence With Clinical Judgment

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Abstract

Menopause occurring before the age of 40 harbors unique challenges as well as lifetime burden resulting from premature deprivation from ovarian hormones, primarily estrogen. Cessation of ovarian function before age 40 is considered premature (ovarian insufficiency), whereas if occurring before age 45, it is deemed “early.” Early/premature menopause may be idiopathic, medically, or surgically induced. Regardless of the cause, for such women, menopausal hormone therapy is truly replacement and should continue until at least the average age of menopause. Hormone therapy offers the benefit of symptom control, and prevention of health consequences associated with premature loss of ovarian hormones.

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