Premature menopause — also known as premature ovarian failure (POF) — occurs when ovarian function stops in women under age 40.
Women experiencing POF have a very slim chance of conceiving with their own eggs.
In most women, it's unclear why they experience ovarian failure. Some causes include:
About 4 percent of women with POF have a family history of the condition.
You may have infrequent periods or stop having periods altogether, and experience symptoms of menopause, such as:
In some women, the only symptom may be an inability to conceive.
Hormonal treatments can be used for the symptoms associated with premature menopause and for long-term prevention of:
In younger women who do not smoke and are not at increased risk for blood clots, the birth control pill is often the treatment of choice.