Mercy Gynecologist Dr. Meghan Lynch Discusses Managing Symptoms Of Perimenopause
Mercy gynecologist Dr. Meghan Lynch discusses perimenopause with film crew from WBAL-TV11 News
Women in their 40s who are missing periods and feeling fatigue could be experiencing perimenopause, and doctors said the experience can be quite different from one woman to another.
When Tina Saratsiotis, 47, got a little absent-minded and clumsy, she didn't realize it was all part of perimenopause.
"I literally fell going up the steps. I did have a few hot flashes, but they ended, and then what happened was my cycle just stopped," she explained.
According to Dr. Meghan Lynch of The Gynecology Center at Mercy, perimenopause is the natural transition a woman's body goes through before reaching menopause, and the symptoms can vary.
"Some people have no symptoms whatsoever. Some people menstruate every month until it just stops, while other women -- their periods get shorter and lighter and farther apart and just sort of fade away," Dr. Lynch said.
Other possible symptoms include mood changes, problems sleeping and hot flashes. Dr. Lynch noted that Ms. Saratsiotis is right at the average age for perimenopause, a condition that can last four to five years. “But it's important to see a doctor as soon as you start having symptoms to make sure it isn't something else,” she said.
"It could be something benign, like a fibroid or a polyp, but it could also be a pre-cancer or cancer. Not to scare anybody, but any irregularity in bleeding needs to be evaluated," Dr. Lynch explained.
If it is perimenopause, it's nothing to fear.
"Just understanding it -- that will take the fear away from aging and worrying about other illnesses," Dr. Lynch said.
Once a woman hits 12 months without a period, that means she's reached menopause and is no longer in perimenopause.
Founded in 1874 in downtown Baltimore by the Sisters of Mercy, Mercy Medical Center is a 183-licensed bed acute care university-affiliated teaching hospital. Mercy has been recognized as a top Maryland hospital by U.S. News & World Report; a Top 100 hospital for Women’s Health & Orthopedics by Healthgrades; is currently A-rated for Hospital Safety (Leapfrog Group), and is recognized by the American Nurses Credentialing Center as a Magnet Hospital. Mercy Medical Center is part of Mercy Health Services (MHS), the parent of Mercy’s primary care and specialty care physician enterprise, known as Mercy Personal Physicians, which employs more than 200 providers with locations in Baltimore, Lutherville, Overlea, Glen Burnie, Columbia and Reisterstown. For more information about Mercy, visit www.mdmercy.com, MDMercyMedia on Facebook, Twitter, or call 1-800-MD-Mercy.
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