Menopause is marked by the absence of periods for 12 consecutive months. This is caused by a gradual decrease and eventual failure of the ovaries to produce estrogen. The most common symptom of menopause, occurring in up to 75% of women, is hot flashes. Hot flashes are marked by a sudden feeling of heat that seems to come from inside and covers the entire body and face. Many women also complain of loss of sleep as a result of hot flashes.
With menopause a woman may experience vaginal dryness, thinning of the lining of the vagina, gradual bone loss, increased risk of heart attack and stroke, feelings or nervousness, irritability, and fatigue, decreased sex drive, difficulty achieving orgasm.
Several options are available to treat the symptoms of menopause or slow bone loss (osteoporosis). Your doctor will be happy to discuss the risks and benefits of menopausal hormonal and non-hormonal treatments including bioidenticals.