For a woman, her body produces a certain hormone responsible for sexual functions, which would include the development of breasts and the onset of her menstrual cycle. This hormone is called estrogen and of this, there are three specific types of estrogen that include estrone, estriol, and estrdiol. Each of these works together, bringing a woman into womanhood and then keeping her there. Estrone is one of the types of estrogen that is measurable with a blood or urine test to determine if a woman is in fact going through menopause. However, when estrone levels are high this could be an indicator for other problems such as tumors of the adrenal glands and ovaries, and even in men, of the testicles. Estriol can also be measured in the blood and is commonly used for testing fetusí when there is concern of Down Syndrome and other birth defects or for checking multiple births. Then, Estradiol is the type of estrogen measured for non-pregnant women, typically those in menopause.
When it comes to menopause and pregnancy, you need to keep in mind that for a woman to become pregnant in the first place, her ovaries must be functioning optimally, producing eggs. Additionally, she must be producing adequate hormone levels of estrogen. Therefore, for menopause and pregnancy, if the woman is in early menopause or even perimenopause, she could get pregnant, although her chances decrease over time. However, if the woman is in full menopause, the production of eggs would be zero and she would be void of a menstrual cycle for a full 12 months.
Now, for menopause and pregnancy, after the age of 35, the womanís fertility begins to decline. Interestingly, there are some women in their early, mid, and late forties who thought they were completely finished with menopause only to pay a visit to the doctor thinking they had the flu. You can imagine their surprise when they discovered that the case of the flu was actually a pregnancy. Therefore, late pregnancy does happen, which is why all women nearing the age of menopause should be tested for the change of life and not take for granted that they are protected from becoming pregnant.
In fact, medical experts highly recommend that women over the age of 50 be on some type of contraception for about one year after stopping the last menstrual cycle. That way, the women have the assurance of not being middle aged and pregnant. Additionally, women who are under the age of 50 should be on some type of contraceptive for two years after the last period. Remember that women taking hormone replacement therapy should work with their doctor since this is not a contraceptive but a hormone replacement, which could make getting pregnant easier.
As you can see, women going through perimenopause and even the beginning of actual menopause still have the chance of having an unplanned pregnancy. The problem is the periods during this time are sporadic but even so the ovaries are still producing eggs, even if the amount is reduced. The bottom line is that until a woman is without a menstrual cycle for 12 consecutive months, she is not actually in full menopause, meaning up until that point, pregnancy is still possible.
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