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Most women experience menopause between the ages of 45 and 55 years. However, 5% of women will go through menopause early, between the ages of 40 and 45 years, and 1% of women become menopausal prematurely, before the age of 40 years [1]. The causes of premature or early menopause are multiple and range from the most common, bilateral oophorectomy, to more rare causes such as genetic, autoimmune, or infectious etiologies. There are multiple adverse long-term health consequences associated with premature or early menopause, including increased risk of dementia, parkinsonism, glaucoma, depression, anxiety, osteoporosis, coronary heart disease, heart failure, sexual dysfunction, and early death. Replacing estrogen mitigates some of these risks, although it may not completely protect against the increased risk of parkinsonism, glaucoma, mood disorders, and sexual dysfunction [1].

Author(s)

  • Stephanie S. Faubion
    Women’s Health Clinic, Division of General Internal Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN, USA
  • Carol L. Kuhle
    Womens Health Clinic, Division of General Internal Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN, USA
  • Lynne T. Shuster
    Womens Health Clinic, Division of General Internal Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN, USA
  • Walter A. Rocca
    Division of Epidemiology, Department of Health Sciences Research, and Department of Neurology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN, USA

Citations

International Menopause Society

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