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Menopause Checklist: Preparing for Your Appointment

By HERWriter
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ASK: What tests or screenings should I have now? Which ones will I need later?

True menopause is indicated by 12 consecutive months without a menstrual cycle and a decreased estrogen level that is congruent with menopause. If you believe you are starting the transition into menopause, your physician can administer blood tests to determine if your estrogen levels (estradiol) are decreased and check TSH (thyroid-stimulating hormone) levels to rule out hypothyroidism. After menopause, there are several tests that can be conducted to ensure continued health including bone density scans, Pap smears, heart health monitoring, and pelvic exams.

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You’ve noticed a few odd symptoms lately and you feel like your mood is swinging back and forth. Is it menopause or just a fluke? Sounds like it’s time to make an appointment with your doctor. But don’t go in unprepared. There are several questions you can ask and information you can offer to make your visit as effective as possible.


Menopause, Tests and Diagnosis. Mayo Clinic. Retrieved November 17, 2015 http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/menopause/basics/tests-diagnosis/con-20019726

5 Tests to Protect Your Health After Menopause. Everyday Health. Retrieved November 17, 2015. http://www.everydayhealth.com/menopause/post-menopause-tests.aspx

Menopause Lifestyle Changes. The New York Times. Retrieved November 17, 2015. http://www.nytimes.com/health/guides/disease/menopause/lifestyle-changes.html

Menopause: Time for a Change. National Institute on Aging. Retrieved November 18, 2015. https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/publication/menopause-time-change/postmenopausal-health-concerns

Reviewed November 20, 2015
by Michele Blacksberg RN

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