Amenorrhea Medical Treatment
Treatment depends on the cause of amenorrhea. Once the cause is determined, treatment is directed at correcting the underlying disease, which should restore menstruation. In case of anatomical abnormalities of the genital tract, surgery may be indicated.
Some causes of amenorrhea can be managed by medical (drug) therapy. Examples
include the following:
- Dopamine agonists such as
bromocriptine (Parlodel) or
pergolide (Permax), are effective in treating hyperprolactinemia. In most women, treatment with dopamine agonists
medications restores normal ovarian endocrine function and ovulation.
- Hormone replacement therapy consisting of an estrogen and a progestin
can be used for women in whom estrogen deficiency remains because ovarian
function cannot be restored.
- Metformin (Glucophage) is a drug that has been successfully used in
women with polycystic ovary syndrome to induce ovulation.
- In some cases, oral contraceptives may be prescribed to restore the menstrual cycle and to provide estrogen replacement to women with amenorrhea who do not wish to become pregnant. Before administering oral contraceptives, withdrawal bleeding is induced with an injection of progesterone or oral administration of 5-10 mg of
medroxyprogesterone (Provera) for 10 days.
Lawrence M Nelson, MD, MBA
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