Menopause is the critical stage in the life of a woman. It is also called the change of life, by which is meant the cessation of the double function of ovulation and menstruation. It does not occur at once or at any definite time in the life of a woman. It may extend a period of several months; or extend over two years or more.
During this period the menses may occasionally make their appearance. Some women cease to menstruate as early as their thirty -second year; while others who are regularly disturbed, they even bear children when they are already fifty or even sixty years of age. These are two extreme cases and rarely occur. It is observed that the average duration of the period of ovulation and menstruation is about thirty-two years. There are many factors which accelerate or retard the change of life. There are also hereditary factors which influence its appearance; others who have born several children in the quick succession seem to have developed it soon. There are certain diseases like anemia and functional disorders which influence the age of change of life.
The intensity of this disorder varies considerably; in certain cases it is nothing more than irregular menstruation-which we may cure. This is some time seen in newly married women. While in others it is strongly felt. It also demands cure so that this period may pass smoothly without producing extra stress on the nervous system as well as on the body of the patient.
Symptoms of change of life vary in different individuals, according to their temperaments. Commonly there may be flushes of heat,rush of blood to the face and head; uterine and other hemorrhages; leucorrhoea and even diarrhoea.
In certain type of women the symptoms are the sallow complexion, semi chlorotic skin, weak pulse etc.
She may look over-anxious. She may develop unusual hair on her chin and upper lip. She may have an unusual power of generating heat, indicated by the habits of throwing away the clothing and opening doors and windows. All of the symptoms are required to be treated whenever intensified.