Reproductive health/Amenorrhea

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Amenorrhoea can be primary or secondary. Primary Amenorrhoea involves the absence of any menstruation by the age of 14 without the presence of secondary sexual characteristics or the absence of periods by age 16 with or without the presence of secondary sexual characteristics. Secondary Amenorrhoea is the absence of periods for at least 6 months in a woman who has had a normal development of puberty and menarche.

Differential Diagnosis

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Ovarian disorders

  • Resistant Ovary Syndrome
  • Premature Ovarian Failure
  • Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
  • Turner's Syndrome

Cervical disorders

  • Cervical stenosis

Hypothalamic disorders

  • Kallmann's Syndrome

Pituitary disorders

  • Prolactin Secreting Adenomas
  • Craniopharyngiomas
  • Disorders of thyroid function


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The diagnosis of amenorrhoea is made using the following clinical skills:


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O'Connor, J. Pathology 2nd ed. Mosby. Edinburgh. 2002.

McCarthy, A & Hunter, B (2003) Master Medicine: Obstetrics and Gynaecology (2nd ed.) Philadelphia: Elsevier Saunder