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You are here : 3-RX.com > Medical Encyclopedia > Diseases and Conditions > Menopause
      Category : Health Centers > Menopause


Alternate Names : Change of Life, Climacteric

Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors | Symptoms & Signs | Diagnosis & Tests | Prevention & Expectations | Treatment & Monitoring

Menopause is the point in a woman's life when menstruation stops for good. This means she is no longer able to have children. Menopause occurs in most women between the ages of 35 and 58. It is a natural event in a woman's life. Surgical menopause occurs when a woman has both of her ovaries removed.

What is going on in the body?

By the time a woman is in her mid 30s, the level of the hormone estrogen in her body begins to drop. Levels gradually decline until a woman stops menstruating. The period during which estrogen levels are dropping but the woman is still menstruating is called perimenopause or premenopause. The point at which the estrogen level has declined enough so that menstruation stops is called menopause. The period of time that begins after menstruation permanently stops is known as postmenopause.

What are the causes and risks of the condition?

Menopause is a natural part of a woman's life. A woman's estrogen level decreases over time, causing her to stop menstruating. A woman who has her ovaries removed because of disease will also go through menopause.


Next section


Menopause: Symptoms & Signs

Author: Terry Mason, MPH
Reviewer: Melinda Murray Ratini, DO
Date Reviewed: 08/15/02

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