Answers for your specific questions.

Wondering about your health? Confused by what you’ve read? Browse our Ask the Nurse answer archive to find answers to many women's health questions and concerns. All answers are from a Cleveland Clinic women's health nurse.

Ask the Nurse Archive

Is Nausea A Menopausal Symptom

March 14, 2018 at 5:10pm

For the past few months, I’ve been experiencing what feels like random morning sickness. For no apparent reason, the thought or smell of certain foods will nauseate me and trigger an anxiety attack.

It’s worse soon after I wake up, but it can happen at any time of the day. I’m 45, not pregnant and having irregular periods. Could these "food aversions" be caused by perimenopause? How can I make it stop?

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Early Menopause

February 1, 2018 at 2:30am

I am 38 years old and BRCA 1 positive with a family history of premenopausal breast cancer. I’m done having children and my OB suggests having a hysterectomy and removing my tubes and ovaries.

I’m very afraid of going through menopause. He suggested a low dose of Estrogen to start out. What would be the benefit (if any) of starting out on a natural hormone replacement vs estrogen? I hated taking birth control when I was younger because of the way it made me feel and I am concerned estrogen will be the same. Thank you!

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Maintaining Vaginal pH Levels

December 19, 2017 at 12:54pm

I’m 46 years old and have recently been told by my Primary Care Physician that I am post-menopausal. As a result, it’s been hard maintaining vaginal pH levels.

I’ve developed an odor that is not related to any infection. I’ve been told to try probiotics, but I’m not sure which ones to use to address the issue. Do you have any suggestions on what types of probiotics (or prebiotics) I can try?

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Hormone Options for Menopause Symptoms

September 26, 2017 at 9:01am

My 53 year old daughter is going through menopause and having a lot of symptoms: stress, emotional distress - ups and downs, and is unable to take estrogen due to the sores she gets on her hands. She has taken birth control pills since she was 16 years of age.

She is currently off estrogen and her hands cleared up. Is there any other substitute or natural or holistic treatment to help with her menopause symptoms?

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How long do hot flashes last?

June 2, 2017 at 9:26am

When do hot flashes stop? I am 63 and still have them.

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How do I know I've reached menopause if I'm on birth control?

June 2, 2017 at 9:02am

I’m 46 and perimenopausal for 6-7 years. I take Yaz birth control.

I still get light periods, but how will I know what hormonal stage I’m in if I’m on the pill? The weight gain and hot flashes really bother me.

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Choosing the Right Hormone Therapy

March 24, 2017 at 4:30pm

I was on hormone therapy for 5 years, but stopped 6 weeks ago because of bleeding. An ultrasound revealed no problems, so my doctor suggested HRT could be the culprit. I did stop bleeding after stopping HRT, but my menopausal symptoms seem to worsen with time. Hot flashes have increased and I am having trouble sleeping, which has never been a problem for me. I am also irritable and feel like crying a lot of the time.

I am 57 and do have a family history of heart disease and strokes. I also have a genetic mutation called MTHFR which can increase the chance of developing clots. Are there any alternatives to HRT that might help my symptoms? Thank you.

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Hormone Therapy Treatment and Alternatives

February 17, 2017 at 12:00am

I have a 59 year old female patient with many medical problems, including osteoporosis and history of stroke, was previously taking Provera/MPA 2.5 mg daily and estrace/estradiol orally 0.5 mg daily.

The Provera was stopped in December 2015, but Estrace was continued. The patient is wishing to restart Provera. Would you prescribe hormone therapy? Any alternatives?

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Perimenopause Symptoms

September 19, 2016 at 10:30am

I am 54 years old and I have regular gynecological exams. The last one was in May and all was fine. I have no uterus, but I do still have both ovaries. I have started with some of the peri-menopause symptoms, mostly hot flashes.

Last month I noticed a lot of vaginal discharge (clear, no odor) a few days of the month.

Odd for me because I never had it before. I actually feel the discharge. No other symptoms. How concerned should I be?

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Age 56 and Still Getting Periods: Is Menopause Near?

March 9, 2016 at 10:15am

I will be 56 years old next month and I still have not gone through menopause. My periods are definitely irregular; I had a total of 4 periods in 2015. My GYN recently ordered an FSH test which showed no level at 31.6. Other than irregular periods, I have not experienced other menopausal symptoms, like hot flashes. Is menopause near?

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