Discharge Post Menopause

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Discharge that occurs after menopause is usually caused by atrophy of the vaginal walls. It is important that medical evaluation take place when the discharge is bloody or is excessive. Infection may be a cause of discharge after menopause and should be diagnosed to begin treatment as soon as possible. Menopause is a stage of life and not a medical condition. The symptoms can be distressing, but in most cases harmless for a woman.

Identification

  • Experiencing a discharge after menopause may be disconcerting, but it is important to discover the cause of the discharge. After menopause, a white, thick discharge may be caused by vaginal atrophy. Estrogen replacement therapy may be used to treat this type of discharge.

    After a woman reaches menopause, there is a lack of vaginal fluids produced by the body. This can cause a greater incidence of infection. The vaginal fluids and menstruation acts as protection from infection earlier in life. When there is no longer any protection, infection is more common. This can also be the cause of vaginal discharge after menopause.

    Bloody discharge after menopause can be the sign of a more serious medical condition and should be evaluated right away. While it could be a normal reaction to fluctuating hormones, it must be checked out by the doctor to determine the cause.

Types

  • Menopause is a stage of life that is marked by a cessation of menstruation and declining or cessation of estrogen production. When this occurs, the body responds with symptoms that are a perfectly normal part of the process. These symptoms include vaginal discharge that indicates atrophy of the vaginal walls. This is a treatable condition, but it is important to note that this type of discharge is a normal part of menopause.

    Infection and serious illnesses are other causes of postmenopausal discharge that must be examined by a doctor so that treatment can begin as soon as possible. Bloody discharge after menopause can be a symptom of cancer. This type of cancer can be effectively treated when it is diagnosed as early as possible.

Effects

  • The discomfort that is experienced by vaginal discharge after menopause can include itching and burning during urination. Once the doctor can evaluate the discharge and determine the cause, treatment can begin and uncomfortable effects will be eliminated or minimized.

Treatment

  • The treatment for postmenopausal discharge will depend on the cause. An infection can be treated with prescription medication for a bacterial infection. Alternatively, an over-the-counter product can be used to treat a yeast infection. The doctor will determine which type of infection that you have during your exam.

    Bloody discharge after menopause may require additional testing or a biopsy to determine the cause of the discharge.

    Hormone replacement therapy can be used to treat a discharge that is caused by vaginal atrophy. This is a normal part of menopause that is caused by decreasing or cessation of estrogen production. Estrogen replacement minimizes many of the symptoms of menopause, including vaginal discharge.

Prevention

  • Using all of the medication that is prescribed for an infection is one way to prevent a reoccurrence of the symptoms. Many of the other causes of postmenopausal discharge are not preventable, but early identification and treatment are essential.

References

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