The 35 Symptoms of Menopause
- Symptom 1 (flashes) Hot flashes are due to the hypothalamic response to declining ovarian estrogen production. The declining estrogen state induces hypophysiotropic neurons in the arcuate nucleas of the hypothalamus to release gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) in a pulsatile fashion, which in turn stimulates release of luteinizing hormone (LH). Extremely high pulses of LH occur during the period of declining estrogen production. The LH has vasodilatory effects, which leads to flushing.
- Symptom 7 (loss of libido) For some women the loss is so great that they actually find sex repulsive, in much the same way as they felt before puberty. What hormones give, loss of hormones can take away.
- Symptom 8 (dry vagina) results in painful intercourse
- Symptom 11 (doom thoughts) includes thoughts of death, picturing one's own death
- Symptom 14(incontinence) reflects a general loss of smooth muscle tone
- Symptom 15 (itchy, crawly skin) feeling of ants crawling under the skin, not just dry itchy skin
- Symptom 16 (aching sore joints) may include such problems as carpal tunnel syndrome
- Symptom 22 (depression) different from other depression, the inability to cope is overwhelming. There is a feeling of loss of self. Hormone therapy ameliorates the depression dramatically.
- Symptom 25 (weight gain) often around the waist and thighs, resulting in 'the disappearing waistline'
- Symptom 29 (shock sensation) "the feeling of a rubber band snapping in the layer of tissue between skin and muscle. It is a precursor to a hot flash"
- Symptom 30 (tingling in extremities) can also be a symptom of B-12 deficiency, diabetes, alterations in the flexibility of blood vessels, or a depletion of potassium or calcium
- Symptom 35* (tinnitus) one of those physical conditions that seems to manifest in some women at the same time as menopause. It can be associated with health conditions such as hypothyroidism and heart disease, and is a known side-effect of many medications, including aspirin (salicylates) and Prozac.
SOME OF THE 35 SYMPTOMS MAY ALSO BE SIGNS OF THE FOLLOWING:
- depression with another etiology
- other medical conditions