Definition - What does Hypoestrogenism mean?
Hypoestrogenism is a lower than normal level of estrogen in the body. Estrogen is the primary female sex hormone and is responsible for the development and maintenance of female sex characteristics and the female reproductive tract. Lower levels of estrogen may cause negative changes in the genitals and libido. Without enough estrogen ovulation cannot occur and the lining of the uterus will continue to grow, causing menstrual cycle irregularities that impact fertility.
FertilitySmarts explains Hypoestrogenism
The ovaries, adrenal glands, and hormones from the brain are responsible for regulating estrogen levels in the body. Hypoestrogenism can happen when there are negative changes in the interaction between the ovaries and the hormones from the brain and can affect fertility. Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) from the brain stimulates the growth of eggs in the ovary and a rapid rise of luteinizing hormone (LH) from the brain triggers the release of an egg and development of the corpus luteum (a temporary structure which produces progesterone to support pregnancy and controls the levels of estrogen). A change in communication between these hormones and the ovaries can prevent an egg from being released from the ovary, making conception difficult.
Hypoestrogenism also causes negative changes in the normal estrogen fluctuations that cause the menstrual cycle. When estrogen is low the uterus does not receive the signal to shed the lining and therefore, continues to grow. This can stop the menstrual cycle and prevent egg release from the ovary.
Symptoms of hypoestrogenism include mood changes, vaginal dryness, and painful sexual intercourse. Treatment may include diet and lifestyle changes, medication, or surgery.