POI is also known as Premature Menopause. It is due to depletion of ovarian reserve resulting in ovarian failure.
It occurs in:
1% < 40 years
<0.1% < 30 years
There are some identifiable causes including genetic and chromosomal causes, immunological, associated autoimmune conditions, smoking and infection. POI can also be due to medical interventions, eg hysterectomy, radiotherapy, etc.
- Menopausal symptoms which can affect quality of life
- Fertility issues
- Effect on bone with increased risk of osteoporosis and fractures
- Earlier onset heart disease with long term increased cardiovascular mortality and total mortality. The risk increases with the earlier age at the time of diagnosis
- Increased risk of early cognitive impairment; the risk increases with the earlier age of diagnosis
- Diminished general and sexual wellbeing
Women need to be counselled for POI, discussing the short and long term consequences and the importance of lifestyle, bone health & individualised treatment options.