Take a free contraceptive test at BestMethodForMe.com
Managing Contraception Questions and Answers
Questions & Answers
Everything you ever wanted to know about managing contraception and weren't afraid to ask.

Click here to ask a question
Search the Questions & Answers Browse by Category
<< Return to questions


How can I tell if my 54 year old patient on Depo-Provera, is menopausal? #1038

I have a 54 year old patient on Depo-Provera. How can I determine when she is menopausal and past the need for contraception?

Good, useful information

Carolyn Norris, ARNP, Allen Women's Health, Waterloo, IA






FSH levels can rise in the late reproductive years or in her pre-menopausal years when a woman can become pregnant so an elevated serum FSH level is definitely NOT clear evidence that a woman is menopausal.

 

            At age 54, I would recommend using Depo-Provera until age 55 and then stop.  Pregnancy is very, very unlikely over the age of 55 without fertility drugs.  (It is very unlikely even with fertility drugs).  The very oldest woman to become pregnant spontaneously and carry a pregnancy to term was 57 years and 120 days when fertilization occurred.  After stopping Depo, if she has no period for a year you have your answer, she is menopausal.

 

            In any case, encourage your patient to take calcium supplementation, vitamin D supplementation, and to get regular weight bearing exercise.  Also encourage her to quit smoking if she does smoke. 

 

            Some women choose to use condoms until they have gone one year without a period.

 

            At what age can a woman stop contraception without fear of pregnancy?  According to Dr. Sarah Bergha at Emory, a 50 year old woman who uses no contraceptive has a 1 in 100,000 chance of becoming pregnant.  At age 44 women who have unprotected intercourse have a chance of only 1 in 10,000 of becoming pregnant. 

 

Reply on 11-10-2005:

Our patient has continued to use Depo.

 

Please read the following question from our website:

How does one diagnose menopause in a woman on Depo-Provera? #618/6  Click here

 

 

Key Words:  Depo-Provera, menopause, contraception

 

Posted 11-19-2005, Updated 6-25-2006, Updated 2-12-8-2008

 

 

 

This question has been answered by the website: www.managingcontraception.com  Send your colleagues, students and patients there.  Complicated and interesting questions are answered regularly.

 

 

 

 

Robert A. Hatcher MD, MPH
Emeritus Professor of Gynecology and Obstetrics
Emory University School of Medicine
Atlanta, GA
---2008-12-8

The directors and owners of this website and any publications and information concerning health matters offered here advise a person with a particular problem to consult a primary-care clinician or a specialist in obstetrics, gynecology, or urology (depending on the problem or the contraceptive) as well as the product package insert and other references before diagnosing, managing, or treating the problem.
Visitor Comments
No visitor comments posted.

Post a comment
Post Comment
To post a comment for this question, simply complete the form below. Fields marked with an asterisk are required.
   Your Name:
   Email Address:
* Your Comment:
* Enter the code below:
 
Related Questions
Attachments
No attachments were found.

Suggestions, recommendations, questions, comments, data from the literature, interpretation of laboratory tests and other information provided on this site are for informational purposes only and are not intended to be relied upon as advice from or implied to be a substitute for the professional advice of a physician, nurse practitioner, nurse midwife, counselor or other healthcare professional. Always seek the advice of your clinician or other professional for any questions you may have regarding your health, medical condition, method of birth control and other family planning or personal/social issues. Periodic references to costs of birth control methods on this website are estimates only and your actual cost for any specific method of birth control may be more or less than the stated amount. Emory University School of Medicine, Bridging the Gap Foundation, and Bridging the Gap Communications Inc are not responsible for any damage or loss you may incur as a result of your use of or reliance on any material or information provided through this website.