The menopause is when a woman stops having periods. It happens when your ovaries stop releasing eggs or have been removed. Women in the UK have their menopause between the ages of 45 and 55 years, with the average age being 51 years. The time before your last period, when your oestrogen levels are falling, is called the perimenopause (“the change”), which can last from a few months to several years. Around half of all women notice physical and/or emotional symptoms during this time.
Every woman experiences the menopause differently. The most common issues are:
- periods can become erratic/heavy
- hot flushes
- night sweats
- vaginal dryness
- low mood and/or feeling anxious
- joint and muscle pain
- loss of interest in having sex.
Some women choose to go through the menopause without treatment, while others prefer some form of treatment to manage their symptoms, by using either hormone replacement therapy (HRT) or an alternative treatment.
We offer treatment to make the menopause easier.
Hormone replacement therapy (HRT). HRT is the most common form of prescribed treatment for menopausal symptoms. It helps to replace the hormone oestrogen in your body, which decreases around your menopause. You may sometimes also need other hormones (such as progestogen and testosterone) that your body is no longer producing.
HRT (hormone replacement therapy) replaces your lost hormones to counteract the effects of the menopause. Your consultant can discuss and recommend the right type of HRT for you. This discussion should cover both the short-term (over the next 5 years) and the longer term (beyond the next 5 years) benefits and risks for you.
There are different ways to have HRT:
- a daily tablet
- A skin patch applied to the skin
- Gel medication applied to the skin
Benefits of HRT:
It is an effective treatment for:
- Hot flushes and low mood associated with the menopause.
- It can improve sexual desire and reduce vaginal dryness.
- It helps keep your bones strong by preventing osteoporosis.
Ms Seema Bagtharia is a Consultant Gynaecologist at Nuffield Health Brentwood Hospital who specialises in general gynaecology including heavy menstrual bleeding,infertility, endometriosis, prolapse, minimal access / invasive surgery, with a special interest in recurrent miscarriage, peri-menopausal problems (including post-menopausal bleeding and menopausal symptoms) . She also performs early pregnancy and gynaecological ultrasound scanning.
How to book a consultation at Nuffield Health Brentwood Hospital
Ms Bagtharia has a dedicated Menopause clinic on Fridays (Weeks 2 & 4) at 18:00-19:30 at Nuffield Health Brentwood Hospital. Telephone: 01277 695 618 to book your appointment.