During the completion of the reproductive cycle, many women suffer from a number of disorders of the reproductive, nervous, and related systems. This phenomenon is called menopausal or menopausal syndrome. In severe menopause due to pathological failures arising from the restructuring of the hormonal system, the patient may require medical and physiotherapeutic treatment. Therefore, when characteristic symptoms appear, it is necessary to consult a doctor.
Phases of menopausal syndrome
The period of menopause in a woman’s life is not a disease, but a physiological norm due to age-related hormonal changes. Between the ages of 45-55, there is a restructuring of the work of the higher parts of the central nervous system of the female body, associated with a genetically engineered mechanism for terminating reproductive function. The result of these changes is a decrease in the synthesis of gonadotropic hormones that ensure the insufficiency of the functions of the gonads.
The processes occurring in the body of a woman during menopause develop gradually. Menopausal syndrome is a complication and malfunction of various systems and organs associated with hormonal changes. Pathologies appear with varying degrees of intensity, depending on the phase of the menopause:
- Premenopausal. It precedes the termination of the menstrual cycle, lasts for 2-5 years. Pathological syndromes occur in 30-35% of women.
- Menopausal. Menstruation stops completely (this can be said after a year of their continuous absence). Symptoms of menopausal syndrome are recorded in 50-70% of women.
- Postmenopausal. The final restructuring of the reproductive and related systems, characterized by estrogen deficiency and increased levels of gonadotropic hormones. It lasts about 2 years, pathological phenomena normally stop.
Menopausal syndrome is called early menopausal syndrome, which gradually develops from the onset of premenopause, and disappears by the time hormonal changes are completed. On average, this condition lasts for 3-7 years, reaches its peak in menopause, and gradually disappears. In the acute stage, the symptoms are manifested intensely, a woman needs the support of others and, often - in drug therapy.
Causes of occurrence
Menopausal syndrome in women is provoked by changes in the structures of the hypothalamus - the gland, mainly regulating the menstrual cycle. She is responsible for the synthesis of gonadoliberin - a neurohormone, under the action of which the adenohypophysis produces gonadotropic (follicle-stimulating and luteinizing) hormones. These substances provide the maturation of follicles and corpus luteum in the ovaries.
The system of the hypothalamus-pituitary-ovaries during menopause undergoes functional changes, due to which, to maintain its balance, the pituitary stimulates the secretion of an increasing number of gonadotropic hormones. The result of this process is a malfunction of the ovaries. The cyclicity of production and the quality of sex hormones of estrogens (estradiol, estriol and estrone) are deteriorating, causing further imbalance in the reproductive system.
Under the combined influence of these factors, ovulation ceases, and the woman’s reproductive period ends. Due to the fact that the pituitary and hypothalamic parts of the brain are associated with its cortex and other endocrine glands, the functions of the associated brain systems change due to changes in the functioning of the hypothalamus-pituitary-ovary system. This causes the development of the following main menopausal pathological manifestations:
- dysregulation of the cardiovascular system;
- malfunctions of the central and peripheral nervous systems;
- changes in metabolic processes;
- osteoporosis and others
In some women, ovarian failure is compensated by increased adrenal cortex function. In this case, the pathological syndrome does not develop and its symptoms are practically not manifested, the menopause proceeds gently, without complications. Violations of the physiological course of menopause occur under the influence of the following factors:
- Intensive work, accompanied by mental, physical and emotional overwork.
- A disorder of the functions of the central nervous and endocrine systems, which developed before the start of hormonal adjustment, under the influence of stressful situations or due to impaired functions of the organs of these systems.
- Difficult pregnancy, childbirth, or a history of postpartum complications.
- Inflammatory processes in the pelvic organs.
- Menstrual irregularities throughout the reproductive period.
- Surgical interventions.
- Bad habits (smoking, alcohol abuse).
Manifestations of menopausal syndrome
All the symptoms of a complicated menopause are conditionally divided into somatic, neuropsychiatric and vasovegetative manifestations of menopausal syndrome. At the early stages of the development of deviations coinciding in time with the onset of menstrual irregularities, vegetovascular dystonia develops with characteristic clinical signs, complicated by neuropsychiatric disorders. Later, somatic symptoms appear associated with age-related changes and the body's response to a changed hormonal background.
The combined neuropsychiatric disorders and autonomic manifestations of menopausal syndrome against the background of the onset of hormonal changes in the body are accompanied by the following neurovegetative symptoms:
- "hot flashes" - a feeling of influx of heat to the head, face, upper body;
- redness of the skin on the neck, face, chest;
- paroxysmal severe sweating, more intense at night;
- numbness of the fingers;
- sensation of "goosebumps";
- convulsive muscle contractions;
- tingling, pain in the heart;
- lack of air, asthma attacks;
- heart palpitations and heart rhythm failures that occur not from physical exertion;
- blood pressure differences.
During menopause, the woman’s mental state is undergoing a serious load. In addition to hormonal adjustment, there is an awareness of the onset of aging and withering of the body, which is difficult to cope with amid disturbances in the nervous system. The most common neuropsychiatric disorders during menopausal syndrome are:
- increased anxiety, obsessive thoughts and conditions;
- sleep disorders
- impaired short-term memory;
- feeling of depression;
- high emotional lability - instability of mood, increased irritability, tearfulness;
- decreased performance;
- impaired concentration of attention;
- depressive syndrome;
- decreased or increased appetite;
- weakening or growth of libido.
Not only the reproductive, endocrine and nervous systems respond to changes in the hormonal background. Reactions from other systems are classified as somatic symptoms, the most common are:
- change in the condition of hair, nails, mammary glands;
- weight gain (almost 50% of women);
- dystrophic changes in the vaginal walls;
- frequent urination;
- decreased skin elasticity, wrinkles;
- due to leaching of calcium, the synthesis of vitamin D is reduced, which provokes fractures, osteoporosis, and spinal diseases.
Pathological menopausal syndrome can occur in three different degrees of severity, with varying degrees of symptomatology. Based on the frequency of manifestations of "tides" pathology is divided into the following forms:
- The first degree of severity. Easy course, no more than 10 attacks of "tides" per day. It is registered in 35-45% of women.
- Moderate degree. From 10 to 20 attacks. It is observed in 25-35% of cases.
- Severe degree. More than 20 attacks per day. It occurs in 15-20% of cases.
Signs of vegetovascular dystonia (observed in 18-20% of women) are more intense during the "tide". Depending on the characteristic set of symptoms, pathological syndrome with menopause is classified into the following forms:
- Typical. Symptoms - hot flashes, excessive sweating, dizziness, headaches, disturbed sleep.
- Atypical. Typical symptoms include swelling due to fluid retention in the body, pain in joints and bones, dryness of the vaginal mucous membranes, heart rhythm disturbances, high blood pressure, allergies and asthma, sympatho-adrenaline crises accompanied by a feeling of fear of an approaching death.
- Combined. It occurs in women, before the onset of menopause, suffering from arterial hypertension, diseases of the cardiovascular system, endocrine disorders, metabolic diseases, and other pathologies.
Treatment of menopausal syndrome
Therapy of pathologies during menopause is based on the timely prevention of a worsening condition of a woman. Prevention of menopausal syndrome is based on the following principles:
- full balanced nutrition;
- regulation of work and rest;
- adequate physical activity, the fight against physical inactivity;
- timely treatment of mental disorders and somatic diseases.
Doctors recommend a diet. Sour-milk products, vegetables and fruits, and proteins should predominate in the diet. Fatty meat dishes, hot pickles, marinades, spices, sweets, caffeinated drinks are limited. An increase in vitamins of groups A, B and E, ascorbic acid is required. To compensate for their deficiency, a course of multivitamins can be prescribed.
The following therapeutic procedures are shown to improve the psycho-emotional state, reduce depression, irritability and reduce the severity of other psychoneurotic symptoms:
- general massage;
- physiotherapy with a sedative effect;
- hydrotherapy, etc.
With severe and moderate form of the syndrome or the absence of the effect of preventive measures and physiotherapeutic treatment, drug therapy can be prescribed. The use of the following pharmacological groups is practiced:
- natural estrogens as part of hormone replacement therapy (Estradiol-17-beta, Estriol, Mercilon, Femoston);
- gestagens (Didrogesterone, Utrozhestan, Progesterone, Lindinet);
- Klimalanin histamine release block (relieves hyperhidrosis, tidal symptoms);
- Sagenitis (supports feedback in the hypothalamus-pituitary-ovary system);
- antipsychotics, tranquilizers, antidepressants - exactly as prescribed by the doctor (Metaperazine, Relanium, Frenolon, Melatonin, Enap, Sonapax, phenothiazine derivatives, Aminazine, Phenozipam, Atarax, Amitriptyline, Paroxetine);
- Nootropics (Piracetam);
- sedatives (Sedavit, Novopassit);
- plant estrogens (Klimandiol, Remens, Klimafen, Mastodinon, Inoclim, Familywell);
- metabolic and vitamin-mineral complexes (Riboxin, Mildronate);
- antihypertensive drugs;
- adrenergic blockers and other drugs that regulate cardiac activity (enalapril, bisoprolol).
Alternative methods of treatment
To relieve the symptoms of hot flashes, folk remedies based on medicinal herbs help. In the absence of contraindications, you can use one of the following methods:
- Sage tea. 400 ml of boiling water requires 1 tbsp. l valerian root, 3 tbsp. l sage, 1 tbsp. l horsetail. Pour boiling water over the mixture, insist for half an hour. Take 100 ml, twice a day.
- Soothing decoction. According to 1 tbsp. l dry motherwort, lemon balm, hawthorn, peppermint. Pour the mixture with 0.5 l of boiling water, keep on low heat for 10-15 minutes. Take 100 ml before main meals, courses of 14-20 days.
- Beetroot juice with honey. 2 tbsp. l spoon beet juice mixed with 1 tsp. honey, dilute 1-2 tsp. water. Take 3 times a day, before meals, gradually switch to undiluted product (without water).
- Tincture on the hop cones. For 250 ml of vodka or alcohol, 20 g of cones are required. The tool is insisted for two weeks in a glass bowl, in a dark place. Take 30 drops diluted with water at the beginning of the flush.