Menopause and Hormone Replacement Therapy

Although menopause is a naturally occurring event in a women’s life typically occurring at about age 51, it’s a recent phenomenon in human history, as large numbers of women typically didn’t live that long. There are still many parts of the world were men and women don’t live to age 50. Unfortunately, the very low hormonal milieu following menopause results in a long list of menopausal symptoms and health consequences. A short list of the symptoms includes:

  • Hot flashes
  • Night sweats
  • Sleep disturbances including insomnia and sleep apnea
  • Mood swings including irritability, sadness, and tension
  • Cognitive deficits including poor concentration and verbal memory problems
  • Social impairment including disruption of family relationships and social isolation
  • Work-related difficulties including reduced productivity
  • Other quality-of-life impairment including embarrassment, anxiety, and fatigue

 

…And a few of the very important lifelong medical consequences are heart attack, stroke, bone loss/osteoporosis/fractures and cognitive dysfunction/dementia/Parkinson’s.

Modern medicine has both hormonal and non-hormonal treatment options for women suffering from these symptoms and/or wishing to avoid these medical problems. Some of these treatments pose risks for certain patients, but most have very few risks and can be used by almost everyone. Many women and their practitioners are confused about the risks and benefits of hormonal treatments. Proper balancing of a woman’s hormones (estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone) is critical for proper success. Dr. Simon is a Past President of the North American Menopause Society (NAMS) and is President of the International Society for the Study of Women’s Sexual Health (ISSWSH). Washingtonian Magazine called Dr. Simon, “The Menopause Whisperer”.