Hi everyone welcome to The Ask Dr Cris Show. I often get asked how I know if I am menopausal or peri-menopausal. Women will come to me with symptoms and say I think I’m menopausal I think I’m peri-menopausal and often we will run some tests and it might come back inconclusive.
It is very difficult to tell if someone is peri-menopausal based on just a blood test. Often we have to go on symptoms. We can go on age and obviously as a woman approaches closer to 50 although from 44 onwards is considered normal for menopause, but closer to 50. Some women start noticing there are some changes whether it is hot flushers or their periods become more infrequent or heavier and lighter. Women notice that they feel more irritable or anxious, they may not sleep as well, and you are wondering if some of those things are associated with hormone changes. It is very, very likely. Once you have gone through menopause that means that you have had no period for 12 months and that is when you can say I am officially menopausal if you would like to call it that! Women can have symptoms associated with that transition for up to 5 years. Most women are over that period in about 18 months but some women continue on for 5 years and unfortunately a small percentage of women can have symptoms for right up until they are in their 70’s and those women suffer and often need treatment for it. That is peri-menopausal and menopause. You can have a blood test but it is often inconclusive when it comes to peri-menopausal. Once you hit menopause we can tell that on a blood test so it is worth going to your local doctor to have that checked out if you feel that you fit within that symptom profile.
If you do have any more questions please feel free to leave them below and I look forward to answering them next time on The Ask Dr Cris Show.