If you’re having irregular or absent periods or other common signs of menopause, there are tests designed specifically to determine if this is the cause of these symptoms.
Menopause is a completely natural process in which the hormonal function of the ovaries begins to decline and a woman’s menstruation stops. The most common symptoms, along with irregular periods, include:
Frequent urination or urinary incontinence
Changes in the mood and libido
When is it advisable to test for menopause?
In most cases, the first stage of menopause called perimenopause begins in women between the ages of 45 and 55. Usually, a medical professional can confirm if a woman is in menopause without additional tests if exactly 12 months have passed since her last menstrual cycle.
However, it is possible to prescribe menopause testing in cases where the cause of the symptoms is not clear. For example, a menopause test is recommended after interventions such as hysterectomy, when signs of menopause appear several years before reaching the age of 50, or when a woman is experiencing unusual symptoms.
What is the FSH test?
Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) play a key role in ovulation and the regulation of the menstrual cycle. With aging, the ovaries become less affected by these two hormones. As a result, the ovaries stop producing estrogen and progesterone, the level of estrogen in the body drops, and this causes FSH to rise.
The FSH test can detect the concentration of FSH in the body and therefore, confirm whether a woman is in menopause.
How to interpret the results
When a woman is in menopause, the concentration of FSH usually exceeds 25 mIU/mL. At the same time, it should be noted that the level of FSH in the blood varies during the entire menstrual cycle. Therefore, if the result is positive, it is important to test a second time 5 to 7 days after the first one. If the FSH level remains elevated after continuous testing, this may indicate the onset of menopause.
Even from the comfort of your home, the MENO-CHECK® test can quickly and easily determine if the concentration of FSH exceeds 25 mIU/mL, which would confirm menopause.
Other types of tests
Estradiol and luteinizing hormone (LH) levels can also give a good indication of the onset of menopause or signal another problem related to the menstrual cycle. A blood sample or urine sample is usually taken to perform these tests.
There are other conditions that can cause irregular periods. In some cases, a healthcare professional may prescribe additional tests such as thyroid tests, prolactin hormone testing, or a pregnancy test to determine if something other than menopause is causing your symptoms.