Health News

Menopause: Link between reproductive history and more severe symptoms says new study

Louise Minchin discusses her experiences with menopause

We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you’ve consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info

During menopause, women experience annoying symptoms which may affect their daily activities and quality of life. The condition begins when the menstrual cycle finishes. Menopause is not a health problem, and some experience it as a time of liberation. However, certain factors involved can cause discomfort and could determine who may be at higher risk of more severe symptoms says a new study.

Menopause usually starts between the ages of 40 and 58 years in developed countries.

For some, it will occur earlier due to a medical condition or treatment, such as the removal of the ovaries.

Around the time of menopause, many females experience physical symptoms such as hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, and a reduced sex drive. It can also lead to anxiety and changes in mood.

These symptoms may start before menstruation ends, and they can last for several years.

The impact on a person’s quality of life can range from mild to severe.

In a recent study published in BMC Women’s Health, the association between reproductive history and menopausal symptoms was further analysed.

The research aimed to determine whether reproductive history, an important indicator of oestrogen exposure across the lifetime, is associated with the severity of menopausal symptoms in women.

The cross-sectional study involved 214 women aged 35–65 who were randomly selected with data being collected by a predesigned structured questionnaire.

Each item was graded by subjects and a total score was obtained by summing all subscale scores.

“There was a significant association between the somatic, psychological, and urogenital menopausal symptoms and reproductive characteristics,” noted the study.

Somatic symptom and related disorders are the name for a group of conditions in which the physical pain and symptoms a person feels are related to psychological factors.

Urogenital menopausal symptoms may include vaginal dryness, burning, discharge, itching or burning with urination.

The study continued: “Women with a history of abortion had greater total and psychological symptoms score.

“Women with higher number of children were more likely to have higher somatic symptoms than others.”

The findings showed reproductive factors may have an influence on the severity of menopausal symptoms.

It concluded: “After confirmation by further studies, these findings may help target women at risk of more severe menopausal symptoms at later ages.”

Menopause is not a health problem but a natural transition.

However, it can involve unwanted physical and mental changes.

Anyone who has concerns about these changes should seek medical advice.

A doctor may recommend either hormone therapy or other treatments such as over-the-counter gels and other products for vaginal dryness, prescription pills, creams, and rings for vaginal dryness, low-dose hormonal birth control pills for hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and mood changes or low-dose antidepressants for hot flashes, even among people who do not have depression.

It’s important to speak with your healthcare professional about the best option for you rather than suffering in silence.

Source: Read Full Article