The menopause is the time in a woman’s life when periods stop. This usually happens in the late 40s or early 50s. It signifies the end of the reproductive life of a woman as eggs will no longer be produced by the ovaries. For a number of years before and after this happens, many women suffer perimenopausal (or climacteric) symptoms such as hot flushes, mood swings, anxiety, tearfulness, poor sleep, vaginal dryness or no sex drive as the body adjusts to lower oestrogen levels. The symptoms can make life miserable. The lower oestrogen levels are also associated with an increased risk of developing osteoporosis, heart disease and Alzheimer’s disease.
Olivia can talk you through the risks and benefits of hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and the alternatives to HRT. There are very few women who are unable to take HRT because of pre-existing health problems; namely women with:
- Personal history of breast cancer,
- Personal history of Heart Disease,(including Angina and past heart attacks)
- Personal history of stroke or TIA- transient ischaemic attack (mini stroke)
- Personal history of active liver disease
- Undiagnosed unexplained vaginal bleeding – until it has been thoroughly investigated
If you have been told that you can not have HRT but do not have one of the above conditions, this may not be the case.
Some women also suffer detrimental effects of a lower testosterone level. This can cause women to have a low sex drive or to feel less enjoyment from sex. If you don’t respond to oestrogen based HRT – Olivia can help with testosterone replacement too.
As the menopause approaches, periods can also become more irratic, frequent and heavier. Most of the time this is because of the hormonal changes going on and this is called dysfunctional uterine bleeding. However it is important to exclude polyps and precancerous or even cancerous changes in the lining of the womb or cervix. Olivia can fully investigate you for all these conditions to reassure you and then discuss treatment options to help you with the perimenopausal problems.