Alecia Giovinazzo MD
Board Certified Obstetrics & Gynecology located in Staten Island, NY
Perimenopause and menopause mark the natural progression of a woman’s declining fertility, but can cause numerous symptoms and body changes that feel anything but normal. At the practice of Alecia Giovinazzo, MD in the Sunnyside neighborhood of Staten Island, New York City, the women’s health practitioners understand the range of symptoms associated with menopause and how this time can seriously impact your quality of life. If you’re approaching menopause and need help managing symptoms and health challenges, contact the office or schedule an appointment online.
What is menopause?
Menopause marks the end of a woman’s fertility. It’s diagnosed once you’ve gone 12 full months without a period. Of course, the hormone changes and associated symptoms can occur for years prior to menopause. During the years leading up to menopause, known as perimenopause, your estrogen and progesterone levels decrease.
Women in the United States go through menopause at the age of 52, on average. You may start perimenopause in your 30s or 40s, and this transitional period leading up to menopause can last only a short few months or for several years.
What symptoms suggest I’m in menopause?
The symptoms associated with menopause vary widely from woman to woman. Some women have virtually no symptoms, while others experience symptoms that are quite uncomfortable.
Women in menopause and perimenopause may experience:
- Hot flashes and night sweats
- Mood changes
- Weight gain
- Low libido
- Vaginal dryness
- Painful intercourse
In addition to these physical symptoms, menopause can change your overall health. The lower estrogen levels associated with menopause also affect bone health and increase your risk of osteoporosis.
What is involved in menopause management?
Menopause is a natural process and can’t be bypassed, but the uncomfortable symptoms and health changes can be managed. The team at Alecia Giovinazzo, MD takes an individualized approach to your treatment, depending on your specific experience and health challenges.
The doctor asks detailed questions about your symptoms, gynecological and medical history, and personal health concerns and issues. They also conduct a physical and pelvic exam.
You may undergo various diagnostic tests, such as a blood test to check your hormone levels and a bone density test to assess bone health.
Treatments may include supplemental hormones and lifestyle recommendations to help you adjust to the hormonal changes.
Supplemental hormones can be administered orally, as injections, as creams, or as pellets inserted under the skin. The hormones balance your levels so you don’t experience the extreme symptoms associated with wild fluctuations.
Hormone therapy can also help with vaginal lubrication and strengthen your vaginal tissue. When this vaginal atrophy is reversed, your sexual comfort is restored. Many women suffer low sex drive as they move into menopause, too. This may be due to hormone changes, so restoring your levels can make you feel more interested in sex again.
Contact Alecia Giovinazzo, MD for menopause evaluation and management. Call the office today or book an appointment online.