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A Journal on Obstetrics and Gynecology

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Minerva Ginecologica 2006 April;58(2):137-52

language: English

Management of menopause

Castelo-Branco C., Rostro F.

Department of Gynecology, Obstetrics and Neonatology, Hospital Clínic Faculty of Medicine, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain


Menopause signifies the permanent cessation of ovarian function and the end of a woman’s reproductive potential. A universal experience in women’s aging, it is the culmination of many years of reproductive aging; a process that unfolds as a continuum from birth through ovarian senescence to the menopausal transition and the postmenopause. The menopausal transition is known to play a major role in the etiology of many symptoms common in middle age and may contribute to chronic conditions and disorders of aging such as osteoporosis, cardiovascular diseases and cancer. Recent data suggest an unacceptable increase in morbidity in a number of women using hormone therapy (HT). Thus, during the past few years, many women and doctors have revised their opinions on HT for menopause-related symptoms, and a substantial number of individuals have discontinued its use because of concerns about side-effects, owing to this, numerous alternatives to HT are promoted, and researches have pointed out the interest in a group of molecules such as selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs) (i.e. raloxifene) and phytoestrogens. Further studies may open a new panorama in patient-specific management of postmenopausal health. Careful assessment of the midlife woman allows for individualized risk-benefit analysis with the formulation of a specific health management plan.

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