Menopause and Depression

Most women are all too well aware of the effect that fluctuating levels of hormones have on mood. Also, the link between menopause and menopausal depression is evident. Therefore the hormones themselves should be the natural target for any treatment. Depression around the menopause is a form of what is called 'reproductive depression'. Other types of this form of depression include pre-menstrual syndrome or depression and postnatal depression. The term 'reproductive depression' is necessary because it emphasises the fact that this is a hormone-related mood change that may well be most effectively and simply treated by a correction of the underlying hormonal changes, and not via the use of anti-depressant drugs,

The Great Danger to Women

These forms of reproductive depression should be treated by gynaecologists, but all too often these patients are treated by psychiatrists who are not trained in endocrinology and hormone therapy,

As Professor John Studd says, "The great danger to women with severe PMS who do not respond to antidepressants is that they are given a higher dose and then a second or third antidepressant, which also do not work. By then, these women can be labelled as suffering from bipolar disorder and the scene is set for mood-stabilising drugs, anti-epileptics and even electroconvulsive therapy. After ten or more years of this therapy it becomes difficult, although not impossible, for these women to be weaned off these psychotropic drugs by use of transdermal oestradiol, which they should have been given in the first place. The clues of course are in the medical history."

For further information - How Should Reproductive Depression be Treated

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