Amenorrhea is one in which a woman of reproductive age fails to menstruate. For a woman to menstruate on time and regularly, her hypothalamus or the part of the brain that controls appetite, body temperature and blood pressure, her pituitary gland, uterus and ovaries must function properly.
The treatment of amenorrhea is dependent on what is causing it considering that it is not a medical condition in itself but a symptom. Some women may have amenorrhea because of nutritional deficiencies induced by dieting. Such women must eat a balanced diet. Obese women may have amenorrhea because of excessive body weight. Such women must try to reduce the amount of fat in their diet, exercise regularly and try to maintain an ideal body weight. These women, however, must not exercise vigorously for more than 8 hours.
Hormone replacement therapy can help a woman suffering from amenorrhea. It consists of a progestin and an estrogen that can be used in women with estrogen deficiency. Dopamine agonists in the form of pergolide and bromocriptine effectively treat hyperprolactinemia. In a lot of women treatment with dopamine agonists medications help to restore the normal functioning of the endocrine function as well as ovulation.
Some women may be prescribed oral contraceptives to restore menstrual cycle and to provide replacement of estrogen to women with amenorrhea and those who do not want to get pregnant.
Women who have genital tract abnormalities may have to go through surgery on the basis of their clinical situation. Women with pituitary and hypothalamic tumours and amenorrhea may need surgery.
Women who have secondary amenorrhea live with the problem till the time their underlying condition is treated. A woman may not menstruate because she has been under stress, which blocked the luteinizing hormone causing amenorrhea to last as long as the stress lasts. The only time when amenorrhea is permanent is when a woman has gone through menopause or after she has been through hysterectomy.
Amenorrhea rarely is caused by a life-threatening condition. In most instances, symptoms and conditions related to amenorrhea are reversible and treatable.
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