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Understanding Menopause

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Menopause is a normal change in a woman’s life, which takes place as her monthly period stops. During this time, the woman may experience certain problems such as vaginal dryness, hot flashes, irritation, and even thinning of the bones.

If you are bothered with the symptoms of menopause, you may choose to treat them with certain hormone drugs. This kind of treatment may be referred to as Hormone Therapy. There are several kinds of hormone medicines, which can be used during and after the menopausal stage.

  • Estrogen-only drugs
  • Progestin-only drugs
  • Combination Estrogen/progestin
  • Combination hormone/progestin

Although there are many available types of hormonal treatment, some women may not be advisable to use them, because of some problems:

  • Vaginal bleeding
  • Have certain cancers, like cancer of the uterus or breast cancer
  • Have a stroke, blood clot, or heart attack
  • Have liver disease
  • Have a bleeding disorder
  • Are allergic to hormone medicines
  • Also, it is not advisable to take hormone therapy if there is a possibility that you are pregnant (yes, this could happen)

Hormone medicines come in various forms. There’s a patch, pill, gel, injection, skin spray, skin cream, vaginal ring, insert, tablet. Keep in mind that these drugs may possibly harm children and pets when ingested accidentally, so mind your medicines.

Side Effects of Hormone Medicines

One side effect can be hair loss or hair thinning. This can also come naturally with age as you reach your menopausal years.

Although hormone medicine can be very effective in reversing the symptoms of menopause, these drugs have side effects. Hormone medicines can heighten your risk of blood clots, strokes, heart attacks, and breast cancer. These drugs may also increase the risk for dementia in women 65 years and up. And, if you still have a uterus, you increase your chance of getting endometrial cancer if you take estrogen-only hormone drugs. ‘

Menopause is a natural phenomenon. The symptoms may become overwhelming at first, but seeing a doctor and discussing your options may help.

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