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Dr. C.
Dr. C., Board Certified
Category: OB GYN
Satisfied Customers: 3064
Experience:  30 years of experience and an award-winning educator.
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I am a 55 year old woman experiencing hot flashes post

Customer Question

I am a 55 year old woman experiencing hot flashes post menopause. I have had hot flashes daily since age 40 and had hoped they would end with menopause, which I went through 2 years ago. I still get 4-5 a day and my entire body breaks out in a sweat. I
have tried lifestyle change - limit alcohol, caffeine, get lots of exercise - and also a few OTC products (Estroven) to no avail. I have never considered hormone replacement because I am otherwise very healthy and don't want the added risk. Is there anything
I can do for them? Could there be an underlying medical cause?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: OB GYN
Expert:  Dr. C. replied 1 year ago.

Hi, It's Dr. C. Board certified Ob-gyne. I hope I can help you today.

There are several options:

http://www.cascadewomenshealth.org/download/PDFs/HealthEducation/Menopausal%20Management/Paced-Breathing.pdf

Alternative medications include clonidine, gabapentin or an SSRI such as Effexor.Which of these might be a good option depends on the details of your situation. For example if blood pressure is low, clonidine is not a good choice. If trouble sleeping, gabapentin could be a good choice, etc.

Nothing works as well as estrogen. Quite a low dose can be used. Using a transdermal patch lowers some of the risks of use such as blood clots and gallbladder disease flares. Research on the use of estrogen replacement used 4 x the dose that many women find helpful enough and also used oral delivery systems which carry more risk.

It's best to schedule an office visit for a very detailed discussion of the risks and benefits of each of these options including options for use of progesterone if you still have a uterus. There are gynecologists who specialize in menopausal management. They are most qualified to help. Here is a link to find a provider nearest you:

http://www.menopause.org/

I hope this information has been helpful.