Hormonal status during menopause – and how it changes
The climacteric, or “menopause”, takes place in different phases, during which hormone levels constantly and gradually change:
- premenopause (ovulation occurs less frequently and therefore progesterone levels drop)
- perimenopause (progesterone has already faded, now also estrogen levels start fluctuating, going up and down. Periods become more irregular)
- menopause (menstruation has ceased for good, hormone production has permanently stopped)
- postmenopause (the time after periods have stopped), the change is definite, hormone production has permanently come to an end
Is there a hormone test for menopause? How changes can be measured
Perhaps you have already asked your gynecologist about a hormone test for menopause and were surprised about the negative reaction: “I already examined you and told you that everything is fine!” “Believe me, you haven’t (yet) reached menopause.”
And if a woman then persists, she will often be told about unnecessary costs.
Some physicians don’t want to check hormone levels during menopause
Many physicians find it difficult to check hormone levels during menopause, because for one thing the hormone levels are constantly changing, and, not every physician enjoys long explanations.
Apart from that, it is not that easy to interpret the various hormone levels; that requires special knowledge. The topic is only briefly addressed in our medical studies, so that many physicians quite rightly may fear to not be very well versed in the matter.
Our education concentrates on identifying diseases – and menopause is not actually a disease. For that reason it can be quite difficult to find a physician who really knows about “menopause and hormones”.
As part of further training on bioidentical hormones, we pass on this knowledge in our intensive seminars. The following link will show you physicians who have undergone the necessary education (https://www.hormon-netzwerk.de/therapeutenliste/), who are not only able to measure hormone levels but are also able to explain and interpret the results.
How gestagens change during menopause
GESTAGENS is a collective term for all hormones that are SIMILAR to progesterone.
The unmodified ORIGINAL HORMONE, which is produced by men’s and women’s bodies is called PROGESTERONE.
Modifications of this hormone are called GESTAGENS or PROGESTINS (or PROGESTAGENS).
So the question must be:
How progesterone changes during menopause
The female menstrual cycle begins with the first ovulation– sometimes as early as the age of 10, more often between 12 and 14 years.
Due to these hormonal changes, a girl turns into a woman. Ovulation continues throughout the entire fertile years, producing the corpus luteum, whose job it is to produce corpus luteum hormones (progesterone).
But when ovulation occurs less often, between the age of 34 and 42, progesterone levels also gradually decrease. If ovulation occurs, the progesterone level increases, but if not, then it doesn’t. Progesterone levels therefore gradually decrease more and more, and finally remain, hardly detectable any more, at levels under 1 ng/ml.
You can read up on the consequences of a progesterone deficiency in the previous article (lower half): https://www.hormon-netzwerk.de/woran-sie-vorzeitige-wechseljahre-erkennen-und-was-sie-tun-koennen/
Estrogen deficiency and its consequences
Estrogen continues to be produced at normal levels (but always at a lower level than progesterone, which is exactly why there is NO ESTROGEN DOMINANCE).
This goes on until also the (granulosa cells in the follicles of the) ovaries gradually run dry and estrogen levels start to drop. That, however, does not happen continuously, but with immense fluctuations, which can occasionally show itself in slight mood swings!
You can read up on the consequences of an estrogen deficiency here: https://www.hormon-netzwerk.de/wechseljahre-was-sind-die-anzeichen-und-symptome-fuer-die-so-genannte-menopause/
What happens to our hormones AFTER menopause?
After the estrogen-yo-yo during perimenopause, the ability to produce these sex hormones has, unfortunately, mostly entirely come to an end and hormones are no longer available.
From then on, the hormone deficiency will be the new normality. Women don’t have a choice but to somehow try and live with it and try and get used to the permanent deficiency.
If you think about the many places where hormone receptors can be found in our body – what all is regulated and controlled by hormones (!) – then you can easily understand that this type of deficiency is not a small matter, but demands great discipline from many women. For some women it often enough gets too much and makes them despair.
Telling women to just pull themselves together a bit is perhaps not the type of support they need…
Women experience a hormone deficiency – how can it be balanced out again
So, this permanent state of having a hormone deficiency is not going to change. That fact first needs to be understood and then also somehow accepted.
Once a woman has become clear about this, she can turn to her physician and discuss how she wants to deal with the situation. Medical information is the basis on which a woman will make a personal decision.
This decision can be a very difficult one when physicians themselves don’t have a lot of knowledge in the field and are also directly influenced by the pharmaceutical industry.
A lot of women are quite rightly very skeptical about undergoing hormone replacement therapy, HRT, because they have often heard of the danger and risks involved. (=> there is a German article by myself on this topic in the journal “gyne” => LANCET).
But there is hope! An alternative that has proved itself for more than 35 years:
treatment applying bioidentical hormones (also: human-identical or natural hormones) in individual dosages!
And more than 400 qualified physicians in Germany: https://www.hormon-netzwerk.de/therapeutenliste/
This special type of therapy applying Dr. Rimkus’ method IN SHORT:
After having determined your actual hormone levels, a pharmacy will produce individually dosed hormone capsules according to your physician’s prescription, which will exclusively contain bioidentical hormones.
(No additives, no preservatives, no coloring, no flavoring, no humectants…)
- Menopausal signs and symptoms
- Refilling a hormone deficiency with bioidentical hormones applying Dr. Rimkus’ method
I hope you can experience the turbulent times of menopause in a positive way!
Your Dr. Beck