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Natural menopause is diagnosed when a woman has not had a period for 12 months in a row. You will be asked about your symptoms, health history, and menstrual periods. A physical exam will be done. This is enough to make the diagnosis.

A blood test to look for follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) may be done to confirm the diagnosis. FSH is made by the pituitary gland. It prompts the ovaries to make estrogen. High levels of FSH suggest menopause. More than 1 FSH test may be needed to confirm menopause.

REFERENCES:

American College of Obstetricians and Gynacologists (ACOG). Practice Bulletin No. 141: management of menopausal symptoms. Obstet Gynecol. 2014 Jan;123(1):202-16, reaffirmed 2016, correction can be found in Obstet Gynecol 2016 Jan;127(1):166.

Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH). Lab Tests Online—American Association for Clinical Chemistry website. Available at: https://labtestsonline.org/tests/follicle-stimulating-hormone-fsh. Updated December 5, 2019. Accessed July 23, 2020.

Menopause 101: A primer for the perimenopausal. North American Menopause Society website. Available at: http://www.menopause.org/for-women/menopauseflashes/menopause-symptoms-and-treatments/menopause-101-a-primer-for-the-perimenopausal. Accessed July 22, 2020.

Menopause basics. Office on Women's Health website. Available at: http://womenshealth.gov/menopause/menopause-basics/index.html. Updated March 18, 2019. Accessed July 23, 2020.

Menopause. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at:https://www.dynamed.com/condition/menopause. Updated December 5, 2019. Accessed July 22, 2020.

Menopause. Planned Parenthood website. Available at: https://www.plannedparenthood.org/learn/health-and-wellness/menopause. Accessed July 22, 2020.

Last reviewed March 2020 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Elliot M. Levine, MD, FACOG  Last Updated: 3/12/2021