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By: Dr. James D. Fontaine

Menopause occurs when the ovaries no longer release an egg every month and is associated with the end of your menstrual cycles. In fact, menopause is diagnosed after you have gone 12 months without a menstrual period. It can happen in your 40s 0r 50s, with the average woman experiencing it at 51.


Menopause is a normal part of a woman’s life as she gets older and is associated with a sharp decline in the production of sex hormones that are naturally produced in your ovaries. It can be caused by a natural decline in reproductive hormones, hysterectomy, and chemotherapy.

Although this is a normal biological process, the symptoms such as hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, weight gain, vaginal dryness, etc. can be treated to restore your quality of life.


If you leave menopause untreated, it can increase your risk for health conditions such as heart disease, dementia, osteoporosis, urinary incontinence, and sexual dysfunction. You may also notice unwanted changes in your body, including loss of muscle tone, weight gain, and poor skin elasticity.

However, you can maintain hormonal balance and your quality of life with hormone replacement therapy. Dr. Fontaine provides personalized hormone therapy with bioidentical hormones. It’s the safest form of hormone replacement therapy and is not dangerous like synthetic hormones.


Perimenopause begins several years before menopause and occurs due to your ovaries producing less estrogen. During this time of your life, you may have menopausal symptoms but continue to have menstrual cycles although they may be irregular. Perimenopausal symptoms include hot flashes, night sweats, irregular periods, mood swings, depression, irritability, fatigue, headaches, joint and muscle pain, decreased libido (sex drive), and vaginal dryness. The symptoms can be quite severe affecting your daily quality of life. However, you do not need to wait until you reach menopause (no periods for a year) before you can treat the perimenopause symptoms and restore quality of life.


The symptoms you feel from menopause can be quite challenging to deal with, but hormone replacement therapy is a great way to keep them under control. Your journey to managing your menopause begins with a consultation with Dr. Jim Fontaine in San Diego, CA. If you’re interested in learning more about our menopause symptom treatments, contact our office to schedule your consultation today.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.