Q: Why do I feel premenstrual all the time--at 50?

Breast discomfort, bloating, acne, and cramps are all symptoms associated with perimenopause, I'm afraid. If your periods are irregular but still happening, what's going on is that your ovaries are not quite done producing hormones, but the fine-tuned system of regular ovulation is winding down. Some chaotic and unpredictable hormone shifts result, contributing to the symptoms you're experiencing.

What you describe sounds perfectly normal and will likely continue to some degree until menopause, when most of these symptoms will subside. Menopause is defined as 12 months without a period, and the average age for menopause is 51. It shouldn't be too long a wait!

Dr. Barb DePree
Dr. Barb DePree MD


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