Premature Ovarian Insufficiency: A Condition That Stop Fertility

Divya Tripathi

, Health A2Z


The duration between puberty and the menopause shows the reproductive window of most women. If the ovaries stop working prematurely or before the expected time (before the age of 40) and there are subsequently no periods, So this problem is known as a premature ovarian insufficiency or premature ovarian failure.


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Premature ovarian insufficiency is rare and occurs in 1 in 1,000 women between the ages of 15 to 29 and 1 in 100 women between the ages of 30 to 39. The average age of early-onset is 27 years. In other cases, a family history of POF is linked in around 4% of the women experiencing the condition.


Women who are dealing with a premature ovarian insufficiency may experience some symptoms which look similar to menopause such as no period, hot flashes, and vaginal dryness. Generally, if a woman is having POF, Then she’ll begin to have irregular periods which stops completely by the time.


What is premature ovarian insufficiency?


Premature ovarian insufficiency is a health condition of women where the ovaries stop producing eggs early, before the age of 40. This is not the same as menopause, which usually occurs by the age of 50.


Symptoms of premature ovarian insufficiency?


Sign and symptoms of POF have elevated cycle day 3 FSH or the estrogen levels, no period, hot flashes, and vaginal dryness just like menopause.


What causes premature ovarian insufficiency?


Sometimes it is not possible to identify the exact cause of this condition. However, some identified causes may include:


  • Genetic problems, such as Turner syndrome.


  • Autoimmune diseases where the body does not recognize certain tissues and attacks itself.


  • The side-effects of radiotherapy, chemotherapy, and other cancer treatments.


  • A number of general conditions, like enzyme deficiencies or infections like mumps.


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Testing of premature ovarian insufficiency


The first step in the diagnosis of premature ovarian failure is a blood test to check that the ovary is producing any estrogen or not. If the pituitary gland is producing the hormones FSH and LH which stimulate the ovarian follicles.


If the blood test shows raised pituitary hormones and that the ovary is not producing estrogen, then it is a quite clear sign of the condition. Another method to help identify POF is having a fertility specialist evaluate the ovaries through a transvaginal ultrasound. In POF patients, the ovaries are small and there are only a few follicles seen.


Treatment for premature ovarian insufficiency


Unfortunately, there is no proven treatment, if POF is diagnosed. However, in some POF cases, some treatment options are there. Here are just a few that a fertility specialist may recommend:


  • If you have untreated hypothyroidism, your doctor will put you on thyroid medication.


  • If autoimmune problems are found, steroid therapy can be used for individuals.


  • A short course of estrogen replacement therapy can be suggested by your gynecologist may lower the FSH to an acceptable value before attempting ovulation induction with human menopausal gonadotropins.




Premature ovarian insufficiency or premature ovarian insufficiency is the condition that reduces your reproduction cycle and causes infertility.  So, if you are dealing with any above mention symptoms then don’t ignore it and consult your gynecologist as soon as possible.


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