Psycho-Babble Medication Thread 135744

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Depression linked to early onset of perimenopause

Posted by OddipusRex on January 13, 2003, at 20:57:11

Well gee more good news for the depressed. And coming right on the heels of the study showing HRT is more dangerous than previously thought. I was personally aware of a few women having early menopause after prolonged SSRI use but I suppose that could have been an effect of depression rather than the SSRIs. The study didn't mention early menopause, does that mean there were just more years of perimenopause and that menopause came at the the usual age? I wonder if there were any differences in the women in the study based on history of SSRI usage.....

Depression Linked to Early Onset of Perimenopause

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Women with a history of depression may enter the pre-menopausal period known as perimenopause sooner than women who have never suffered from depression, according to a report published in the January 13th issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry.
Perimenopause is a term for the years before a woman's last menstrual period, when menstruation tends to be irregular.

At a major menopause meeting in 2001, Dr. Lee S. Cohen and colleagues from Harvard Medical School in Boston presented findings from a study of 34 middle-aged women that suggested a link between depression and early perimenopause onset.

In the current study, Cohen's team provides updated results after analyzing data from 332 women with and 644 women without a history of major depression. The follow-up period was three years.

The authors found that women with a history of depression were 20% more likely to enter perimenopause early than women without this history. However, the most severely depressed women were twice as likely to enter perimenopause sooner than their non-depressed peers.

Compared with non-depressed study participants, women with a history of depression had higher follicle-stimulating hormone and luteinizing hormone levels and lower estrogen levels, the investigators note.

Women with a lifetime history of depression, as well as an earlier perimenopause onset, may spend a prolonged amount of time in a low-estrogen state, which has been tied to a number of health problems, the researchers note.

"Our research may encourage more screening for depression symptoms and history by gynecologists," lead author Dr. Bernard L. Harlow said in a statement. "Similarly, psychiatrists may also focus more attention on menstrual cycle changes and perimenopausal symptoms while screening late reproductive-aged patients with recurrent mood disorder."

SOURCE: Archives of General Psychiatry 2003;60:29-36.

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