for her role as one of "Charlie's Angels," Cheryl Ladd's other
notable career performances include, "When She Was Bad," "Every
Mother's Worst Fear," "Permanent Midnight," and her Broadway
debut in "Annie Get Your Gun."
currently working with Dr. Donnica and other women physicians on Baseline
50, a national campaign to educate women about menopause and its treatment
options including HRT.
Menopause and Treatment Options
At 46, menopause was the last thing on my mind. I felt
young, healthy and vibrant. When I began experiencing unfamiliar symptoms,
including mood swings and skin changes, it never occurred to me that I might
be entering menopause.
I did a little research and found out that my symptoms might
be related to estrogen loss. I began to work through the first phase of my denial
- it was time to admit I was experiencing the onset of menopause.
Even when I started to entertain the notion that these changes
might signal menopause, I denied that I needed to speak with someone about it.
After all, I was doing everything right. I ate well, exercised, and took a daily
calcium supplement - all the things I was supposed to do to protect my health.
I considered my self informed on health matters and thought
I could handle menopause without too much trouble. Only later did I realize
that this was another form of denial.
Eventually, my mood swings got to a point that my husband
asked me to please speak with the doctor. I was always such an upbeat person,
yet I had begun spending time in bed, weeping. It was so unlike me.
My doctor suggested I try hormone replacement therapy to
help me alleviate the symptoms I was experiencing. After some initial discussions,
I agreed to try it. My doctor told me that not only would it help my symptoms,
HRT would help me protect my bones against osteoporosis. While this was a benefit,
I did not realize its significance, because I felt my bones were protected by
my healthy lifestyle.
My doctor also suggested I take a bone mineral density test
at this time. Imagine my surprise when the results came in that I had already
experienced early menopausal bone loss in my left hip!
As a petite, fair woman I knew I was at risk for osteoporosis,
but I was not aware that the estrogen loss of menopause increased that risk.
I found menopause to be an unnerving, confusing time and
was dismayed at the lack of clear, straightforward information available to
answer my questions. It seemed like everything I read raised more questions
than answers. That is the reason I chose to speak out - I did not want other
women to go through the same confusion I did. With a little information, women
can celebrate menopause as the transition to a new phase in their lives, and
make it a less fearful time.
Click here for more information on menopause.
Created: 5/13/2002  - Cheryl Ladd