What is Premature Menopause?
Premature Menopause, also known as Premature Ovarian
Failure (POF) or Early Menopause, is a condition in
which the ovaries stop releasing new ova before the
age of forty.
What Causes Premature Menopause?
Premature Ovarian Failure is most commonly idiopathic
- meaning that no reason for it is known. In some cases
it can be caused by genetic diseases such as Fragile
X syndrome and Turner Syndrome, chemotherapy and radiation*,
surgical removal of ovaries or uterus, and auto-immune
What are the Symptoms?
The symptoms associated with premature menopause are
generally the same as those associated with menopause.
For a list, see one of the following links:
symptoms on earlymenopause.com or Symptoms
of premature menopause on medicinenet.com
Note that many of the symptoms listed can be caused
by a wide variety of other medical conditions that may
or may not have any impact on your fertility.
How is it Diagnosed?
A doctor will do a blood test to check for hormones
including estrogen, progesterone, and FSH – Follicle
Stimulating Hormone. FSH is the hormone that tells the
ovaries to produce eggs. If the FSH is higher than 30,
the doctor may diagnose Premature Menopause.
If hormone therapies are not an option, the best fertility
option is donor eggs, since
the ovaries are no longer producing eggs. Donor eggs
can be fertilized with the partner's sperm (or donor
sperm) and transferred using IVF.
Likewise, donor embryos can be used and transferred
Stories by women diagnosed with premature menopause:
PJ (find out more about high FSH!)
*For women who need to
undergo chemotherapy or radiation, freezing embryos,
eggs, or ovarian tissue prior to treatment should be
baby born after frozen ovarian tissue transplant
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