How Long After Oophorectomy Does Menopause Start (And Why)?

Exact Answer: Immediately After Bilateral Oophorectomy

Oophorectomy term used to describe the condition when one or not the ovaries are removed surgically. Ovaries eat the part of the flame reproductive system, which produces hormones that control the menstrual cycle.

Menopause is a natural condition, after which pregnancy is no longer possible. When a person reaches 40 the process of menopause usually starts up. But in some conditions, it may happen earlier. For example, some surgeries, medical treatments, or health conditions can also result in earlier menopause. Removal of one or both ovaries through surgery will lower the levels of hormones estrogen and progesterone production. surgical menopause will be triggered by removing both ovaries.

How Long After Oophorectomy Does Menopause Start?

Age of menopause 45-50 years
Menopause after hysterectomy 5 years

When both the ovaries are removed surgically then it’s called bilateral oophorectomy. And it’s called unilateral oophorectomy when the surgery involves removing only one ovary. During the surgical removal of the uterus or hysterectomy oophorectomy is performed as a part of the operation. But unless the ovaries are removed, menopause does not occur.

For most women between the ages of 45 to 55 menopause takes place. When a woman skips her periods for 12 months after a certain age(45 to 55 )then she is officially in her menopause. generally, women may begin to experience some premenopausal symptoms years before menopause. Some premenopausal symptoms include irregular periods, chills, vaginal dryness, hair thinning, dry skin, and weight gain.

Surgical menopause holds several side effects like loss of bone density, low libido, vaginal dryness, and infertility. Surgical menopause or removal of ovaries can cause hormonal imbalances. As ovaries and adrenal glands yield, the female sex hormones are called estrogen and progesterone. When both ovaries are removed surgically, the adrenal glands can no longer produce enough hormones to maintain balance.

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The risk of a variety of health conditions including heart disease and osteoporosis increases due to hormonal imbalance. If your medical history gives any such reasons, then your doctors may or may not recommend hormone replacement therapy (HRT) after oophorectomy. This is to reduce the risk of heart diseases. And If you have a history of breast or ovarian cancer then your doctor will avoid giving you estrogen. Menopause is generally seen in elderly women.

Why Does Menopause Start So Long After Oophorectomy?

In an emergency case removing the ovaries and experiencing surgical menopause can be lifesaving for many women. Some cancers are estrogen-dependent, which can cause women to evolve colorectal cancer and breast cancer at an earlier age. And If women with a history of ovarian or breast cancer in their families have a high risk of developing these cancers. Because their genes are sometimes unable to suppress the growth of the tumor.

In such cases, oophorectomy could be helpful enough to prevent the risk of developing these cancers. To reduce pain from endometriosis surgical menopause is also adopted by some experts. Endometriosis is a disorder in which the uterine tissues grow outside the uterus. This irregular tissue can also be found growing in the ovaries, fallopian tubes, lymph nodes or intestines, and causes significant pelvic pain.

However, if your ovaries are normal with no abnormalities. Then it’s highly recommended by experts not to remove them as a remedy for other pelvic conditions. Your doctors may recommend hormone replacement therapy to lessen the negative consequences of surgical menopause. HRT or hormone replacement therapy neutralizes the hormones that you’ve lost after Oophorectomy.

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The younger women would be more beneficial by HRT as they have removed their ovaries before their biological menopause.HRT also reduces the threat of other diseases like heart disease. It also prevents bone density loss and osteoporosis. However, HRT has also been correlated with developing some cancers. An increased risk of breast cancer is there for women with a strong family history of cancer.

Conclusion

Estrogen plays a crucial part in the body of a woman. It influences the brain, bones, skin, heart, blood vessels, and more. While its level reduces gradually with age During biological menopause. But during surgical menopause, there is an immediate drop in estrogen which can lead to severe health effects.

Before going for an oophorectomy surgery talk to your surgeon about all the side effects and benefits. Discuss all the options which could help to lower risk factors. Your doctor may recommend you stop eating and drinking before a few hours of surgery. He may also prohibit you from taking any other medications.

Reference

  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0378512209002643
  2. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.3109/13697137.2015.1020484
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