ZocdocAnswersI'm 43, why have I been having hot flashes?

Question

I'm 43, why have I been having hot flashes?

Just had Mirena removed in July. Also have not had a cycle since removal. Had serum pregnancy test and was negative.

Answer

If you have not had a period since you had the Mirena IUD taken out, then you have what we call secondary amenorrhea. This is when someone who used to have normal periods loses their period. I recommend that you speak with your OB/GYN. The most common reason for this is pregnancy. Since this has been ruled out, then other causes must be looked into. While the list is long, in someone your age you have to address the possibility that you are approaching menopause. While 43 is a bit young for this, it is not out of the realm of possibility. In fact, doctors generally do not call premature menopause a condition unless it happens prior to the age of 40. The best way for you to figure out what is going on is for you to schedule an appointment with your OB/GYN. Secondary amenorrhea is usually worked up first with blood tests to rule out ovarian failure which is really what happens during the menopause. Your doctor will likely test you for FSH and LH which are two hormones that rise during times of menopause. Estrogen and progesterone levels will probably also be checked. In addition, your doctor will more perform a pelvic exam. After that, you should be looking to get to the bottom of what is going on.

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