Menopause can happen if cancer
treatment affects a woman’s ovaries. The ovaries may be damaged by radiation therapy and
not work normally. Or the ovaries may be affected by medicines. Taking medicine such as
tamoxifen can cause symptoms of menopause. Chemotherapy can cause the symptoms of
menopause for months or years after treatment. Sometimes these hormone changes happen
quickly. This can make the symptoms worse.
In younger women, menopause
symptoms may stop after treatment. Normal menstrual periods may start again. In older
women, the menopause is more likely to be lasting. No matter what a woman’s age is, if
the ovaries are removed she will have permanent menopause.
Talk with your healthcare provider about the cancer treatment you had and if it can cause menopause.