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Examining the Types of Surgical Menopause
For many women, menopause is a natural, eventual rite of passage which occurs when menstruation ceases physically. These women will likely experience perimenopause, which are the years of symptoms leading up to menopause. However, some women may experience surgical menopause which is the obvious result of some sort of surgery or medical treatment.
Defining This Type
Surgical menopause occurs when a woman who has shown no symptoms of menopause gets her ovaries removed. This procedure may occur for various reasons like cancer, frequent infections, endometriosis or fibroids. Other medical treatments like chemotherapy and radiation could damage the ovaries, thus stopping the production of eggs and are considered a contributor to surgical menopause as well.
Occasionally, women who get a hysterectomy, the removal of the uterus, may also have their ovaries removed but not always. Just the removal of the uterus does not cause surgical menopause as the ovaries are left there to produce hormones thus maintaining that hormonal track for eventual natural menopause.
Symptoms of This Type
The symptoms of surgical menopause will be the same as women who go through it naturally, only the severity and frequency may be quite different. While a few women who have had their ovaries removed have experienced minimal menopausal effects, the majority of women are plunged abruptly into this hormonal abyss.
Women with surgical menopause will have more severe hot flashes and the sessions may last a lot longer and with more frequency. Other women will experience these hot flashes gradually and they may just be more of a nuisance than anything. However, the surgical menopause brings out the worst in many of the symptoms.
There is also an increased risk of osteoporosis in women with surgical menopause as well as heart disease, stroke and blood clotting. Depression is a common factor in these women too but luckily some anti-depressants like Prozac and Paxil have been known to not only alleviate these depressive symptoms but also hot flashes as well.
For women experiencing surgical menopause, it may be worth it to you to undergo hormone replacement therapy despite the risks just too quickly alleviate some symptoms. Otherwise, alternative treatments are often the prescription that some doctors will prescribe like the anti-depressants listed above as well as exercise, acupuncture, reflexology and even herbal remedies. For sure, a diet rich in Vitamin E and calcium is important just as is the introduction of more soy products and active beneficial bacteria cultures that are found in yogurt and other dairy products. A number of treatment options exist for women who undergo surgical menopause that do not wish to take potentially harmful hormone replacement therapy.
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