Your Periods as You Transition Into Menopause

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Women's periods change as they transition into menopause. If you have been on oral contraceptives, you are unlikely to notice changes. But many of the women in our medical practice have had a tubal ligation, or a partner with a vasectomy, or are using condoms so that they do not have the cycle control that a birth control pill could afford. So that the transition can take many forms. Many individuals are  likely to have the heavy clotting and soaking every woman dreads when it comes to the periomenopausal time. When women begin to enter menopause about one third will report heavy bleeding!  As they get into the final stages of the menopause transition about 40% will report heavy bleeding. The fact that these percentages are accurate has been confirmed by scientific studies and now a study aims at explaining why. It has now been shown in a study by researchers at the University of Sydney, Dr. Hale and her group, that the level of estrogen is directly related to why these heavy cycles occur. Those with higher estrogen levels, to abnormally high levels (usually around the 185 pmol/L level which is a lot higher than the 20-50 pmol/L levels in early menopause) that there will be excessively heavy bleeding. The heaviest of the heavy periods are those that follow a cycle during which a woman did not ovulate.So if you want to make sure you have a smooth transition of periods as you get into menopause we suggest that you learn as much as you can, get checked for anemia if you are bleeding heavily, get tested for any abnormalities to see why you are bleeding other than just transition, so be sure to chart your bleeding. Women should also consider discussing their management plan with their gyno as they enter into their 40s when these symptoms are likely to occur. Let us know how your transition to menopause was. Was it easy? Was the bleeding the hardest part of transition or was it something else like sleep or lack of sleep? Did hormone testing or birth control pills help you? There are so many choices to gab about!


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