Health Information

Risk Factors for Premature Menopause

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A risk factor is something that increases your likelihood of getting a disease or condition.

Menopause is a natural process, which usually occurs around the age of 50. However, if the normal menstrual cycle is interrupted prior to age 40, it is thought to be abnormal and is referred to as premature menopause.

Risk factors for premature menopause include:

  • Family history of premature menopause
  • Surgical removal of the ovaries
  • Radiation
  • Chemotherapy
  • Medications that reduce estrogen levels
  • Smoking
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Medical treatments (pelvic surgery, chemotherapy, or pelvic radiation therapy)

Revision Information

  • Reviewer: Andrea Chisholm
  • Review Date: 09/2012 -
  • Update Date: 03/18/2013 -
  • The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists website. Available at: http://www.acog.org/~/media/For%20Patients/faq047.pdf?dmc=1&ts=20130514T1031516698 . Accessed November 2009.

  • North American Menopause Society website. Available at: http://www.menopause.org . Accessed February 15, 2006.