The menopausal transition is typically marked by the presence of vasomotor symptoms such as hot flushes and night sweats (hot flushes that occur with perspiration causing nocturnal awakenings). Other symptoms commonly observed during the menopausal transition include depression, anxiety, insomnia, memory problems, and sexual dysfunction. Hormone therapy has been the treatment of choice to alleviate physical symptoms associated with the menopausal transition and to help in preventing the clinical consequences of an estrogen-deficient state, including osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease; however, recent results form large, prospective studies have questioned the safety of long-term hormonal therapy, as well as its efficacy to prevent cardiovascular diseases. Thus, other treatment options, including antidepressants, are being considered to provide relief for menopausal symptoms.
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