Hidden side effects of menopause

Women suffering from the side effects of menopause are not seeking treatment.

Hidden side effects of menopause

Many women are affected by hot flushes during the years before and after menopause. Also known as vasomotor symptoms (VMS) they are a result of loss of ovarian hormones. Symptoms are longer lasting and more severe for women who have undergone hysterectomy, and can occur almost immediately following surgery. The effects of VMS are not confined to feeling hot; more than 70 per cent of all menopausal women and 90 per cent of those who have undergone hysterectomy also experience disturbed sleep, fatigue, impaired short-term memory, along with anxiety and depression.

Up until recently the effects of VMS were treated with hormone therapy, but with many unsubstantiated claims in recent times that it leads to an increased risk of cancer, there has been a decline in its use. According to a study by a Yale School of Medicine researcher and colleagues published in the online journal Menopause, the team found that a high percentage of VMS were not treated in most women. This in turn has seen a frequent but avoidable consequence: women suffering from these side effects of menopause not seeking treatment and dropping out of the workforce while many of them are still at the height of their careers.

While it is concerning that there are significant costs involved with work lost, there are alternative treatments available to women suffering the effects of VMS, but due to their reticence in mentioning their issues they continue to suffer in silence. Philip Sarrel, M.D., Emeritus Professor in the Departments of Obstetrics, Gynaecology & Reproductive Sciences, and Psychiatry at the Yale School of Medicine says, "Women are not mentioning it to their healthcare providers, and providers aren't bringing it up. The symptoms can be easily treated in a variety of ways, with low-dose hormone patches, non-hormonal medications, and simple environmental adjustments such as cooling the workplace."





    COMMENTS

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    lissette
    17th Oct 2014
    10:37am
    and especially people who have had their ovaries removed.
    lissette
    17th Oct 2014
    10:37am
    and especially people who have had their ovaries removed.
    particolor
    17th Oct 2014
    3:40pm
    Twice ..
    Squirrel
    17th Oct 2014
    11:38am
    Yes lissette, I've had menopause for 17 years post hysterectomy. It's no fun specialist said some women can have it till they die in their 90's.
    moke
    17th Oct 2014
    2:43pm
    Squirrel I had a total hysterectomy in my early thirties and at 75 still suffer, but since hormone replacement increases the frequency of Migraines, I don't use them Even the natural cures haven't helped
    I just live with it and it isn't any fun, but life goes on we just have to make the best of it.
    Squirrel
    17th Oct 2014
    11:40am
    Also a bit scared to take HRT after taking it for 10 years and having a strong family history of breast cancer.
    Eha
    17th Oct 2014
    12:58pm
    PLEASE go to 'Amazon' or directly to 'thekitchensgarden' in Illinois Us where a most wonderful Kiwi gal got some 68 of us to write of our experiences with menopause. Amongst us many, many Australian women!! It is worth every dollar of only some fifteen barely to cover costs and you may even want to join us on line!! OK name: ''Letters for my little sister' . . . . No, I am NOT trying to sell you anything . . . being an avid reader of this publication I am just trying to teach you what is honestly there!!
    margiemill
    17th Oct 2014
    1:18pm
    I am 70 in February and, am still experiencing hot flushes at least a few times a day.
    They started when I was 45. A family history of breast cancer and other cancers has precluded me from using HRT.. My 48 year old daughter has found a " very low dose" anti depressant has been successful treatment for her flushes, but were not effective in treating mine..
    Pinky
    17th Oct 2014
    1:40pm
    I had a hysterectomy at 43, but still have ovaries. I started hot flushes very quickly afterwards and am now 65 and still have the odd flush. My sister is the same. Now it is certain foods and wine that set it off. It is a hideous time of life and SO EMBARRASING to break out in a dripping sweat in front of people. I have a male cousin who is early 70's and he has hot flushes and has done for years.
    Tathra
    17th Oct 2014
    1:46pm
    I went through menopause in my very early 40`s and had some hot flushes, not bad more annoying. 8 years ago I had breast cancer and the drug I was given gave me horrid hot flushes and night sweats so had to go onto an over the counter med recommended by my doctor. Now the cancers back, this time I also had chemo last time only radiation treatment, and once again on hormonal pills so the hot flushes are back once more, this time not bad but still annoying. Lets hope this is the end as 3 times is 3 times too many for me!
    nena
    17th Oct 2014
    2:10pm
    I have had hysterectomy in 1979 (I was 39), an ovary removed at 45. Menopausal symptoms started soon after hysterectomy. Doctors put me on implant HTR once a year without testing anything. At 60 my GP discover I had developed breast cists, benign one however they put me on patches instead (I could not tolerate pills) saying they were safer. At 68 another GP, this time a male doctor, took me off of that because it was found that HRT could develop cancer. Since then I tormented with hot flashes, mood changes, craving for food and I don’t know what all the time, suddenness feelings, insomnia, palpitations (A. F.), noises in my head, itching all over my body and much more. My male GP said he knows how bad those symptoms are (does he really?). I have tried some alternative options but nothing works. I’m now 76!!! And sometime I think I’m going mad.
    HOLA
    17th Oct 2014
    4:11pm
    during Menopause the only symptoms were hot flushes and itching skin, usually at night. This lasted maybe one year then everything clear. I was told Menopause was actually a pause from men, how true. You never hear if women living in African villages suffer from the Western Woman's complaint. It would be interesting to hear about this.
    Mitch
    17th Oct 2014
    4:21pm
    haven't had hysterectomy, but have hot flushes since 28, now 54 and have full blown volcanic eruptions, live with aircon (in car, at work and in bedroom some things take priority over money) have migraines, mood swings, aches and pains but will not use HRT and so far have not killed anyone. Do not know how our grandmothers etc ever did this without the AC.
    honeybud
    18th Oct 2014
    3:40pm
    I had a hysterectomy at 28 still have my ovaries, to this day at 59 I am still experiencing feeling ever so hot, it happens in summer as well as in winter, I have the fan on one minute the next I turn it off as feel cold, its awful especially when going out somewhere special all dressed up, make up on etc then I come over all hot and sweating. Looks like I'll have to live with it for the rest of my life as have a friend who is 66, she is still experiencing the same thing.
    Clara Bay
    19th Oct 2014
    6:27pm
    I have not had either a hysterectomy or had my ovaries removed but have suffered severe menopause problems since 1997. I tried all the herbal remedies, had acupuncture and took all the off the shelf products such as Remefemin and Promensal to no avail. Finally, sleep deprivation sent me to my doctor to get a prescription for HRT which worked like magic! Finally, a nights sleep without waking 3 - 4 times feeling hot and uncomfortable. Small problem .... my doctor told me the average weight gain was 10 - 15 kilos and I have put on 20! After having several breaks from HRT, I would always end up with the nocturnal hot flushes again within 6 weeks or so of ceasing the medication. Finally, I saw a breast specialist who prescribed Livial which is a synthetic form of HRT and this has helped to end the hot flushes, keep my emotions under control and make me feel like a human being once again. Mind you, I'm a somewhat chubby human being but my partner loves me the way I am and I enjoy good health. Perhaps my experience will help other sufferers.
    Incognito
    20th Oct 2014
    12:24am
    There are many natural remedies to consider, and also thyroid problems can cause similar symptoms so worth getting it checked out. Sometimes things are blamed on menopause when it isn't the cause of symptoms. A good healthy diet free of sugars and processed foods also will help.
    naturgoddess
    22nd Oct 2014
    10:28am
    I am 55 and menopause hit me like a ton of bricks at 48. What the article above doesn't mention is that one third of women will have no or very minor symptoms, one third will have mediocre symptoms, while one third will experience severe and debilitating symptoms. I have been suffering with severe symptoms for more than 7 years now, including anxiety, depression and severe fatigue and exhaustion. If I only had hot flushes, I would be able to cope however there are many and varied symptoms of menopause and many of them are not mentioned above. I have tried many different types of therapies, including natural ones to start off with, then acquiesced to conventional HRT. Starting off with patches which were a failure, I went on to try a variety of other types of HRT, probably about 8 different types. All to no avail. Doctors who have not been through it do not understand. Referred to an Endocronoligist, she was happy to hand over a few prescriptions before telling me that I will never get better. After paying $360, I left there feeling totally disillusioned by the medicos. It's been a very long & difficult time as I am unable to work due to other severe health issues and the only thing that keeps me going are the dreams that I have and an inner strength that I have discovered in the process. Although the article states that it can be severe for women who have had a hysterectomy, this is not true. There are so many myths that need to be quashed. The other myth, that if your mother had a difficult time so will you is also untrue. My mother is 80 and she barely remembers it. It highlights the fact that there are so many women, like myself, who do suffer in silence. It is our strength, courage and indomitable spirit that keeps us going. I applaud all those women who are suffering and have not found relief with HRT or natural therapies. My heart goes out to all you amazing women and I wish you robust health and abundant energy. Blessings
    Pinky
    23rd Oct 2014
    9:17am
    In reply to Honey Bud, re the make up running off the face. I use Revlon foundation. Any of their 'colour stay' ones stay on well and truly even through sweating with flushes, sport, swimming etc. also, I consulted a Herbalist. She made me up a tincture designed exactly for my problems which were mood, flushes and bladder urgency which came on with the flushes. It was quite expensive but I stuck with it, tastes foul, but reduced my symptoms by half. I was on PB pills for a while and they cut down HF's which was very nice, but then I didn't need them any more and , yes, you know what happened....
    Pinky
    23rd Oct 2014
    9:24am
    I do wonder why the hot flushes can last for SO Many years. For me, of course they were hormone related for the first 5 years or something like that, but once the estrogen ceases, why do the hot flushes continue for so many years!!! I was on HRT for 7 years which was brilliant but once I came off it all the symptoms come back and it seems it takes you back to square one and it all starts again, so really, best to not to take it and battle through with herbal tincture....much stronger than anything from the chemist.


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