Your doctor will review your medical history and perform a physical examination. If menopausal symptoms occur inappropriately or too early, the doctor may also do blood tests. While these tests are not essential, they can assist in diagnosis and management.
If blood tests show an elevation in the follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and a drop in the hormone estradiol, you have reached menopause.
However, menopause is generally diagnosed when you’ve not had a menstrual period for 12 consecutive months and no other biological or physiological cause can be identified.
What is menopause?
Causes of menopause
Reviewed and updated by Dr Dr Carol Thomas MBChB (UCT) FCOG (SA) MMed (O&G) (UCT), Specialist Gynaecologist in private practice, Cape Town, Secretary South African Menopause Society and Director of the WomanSpace. March 2015.
(Previously reviewed by Dr Mike Davey, President of the South African Menopause Society, and Prof B. Schaetzing MD, FCOG (SA), FRCOG, PhD. Part-time Consultant, Dept of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Stellenbosch)