Premature ovarian failure is reduced function of the ovaries (including decreased production of hormones). Ovarian failure that occurs before the age of 40 is considered premature ovarian failure.
Ovarian hypofunction; Ovarian insufficiency
Premature ovarian failure may be caused by genetic factors such as chromosome abnormalities. It may also occur with certain autoimmune disorders that disrupt the normal function of the ovaries. Most often there is no obvious cause, although a family history of the condition may play a role.
Chemotherapy and radiation therapy can also cause premature ovarian failure.
Women with premature ovarian failure may develop symptoms of menopause, which include:
This condition may also make it hard for a woman to become pregnant.
Estrogen therapy often helps relieve menopausal symptoms and prevents bone loss. However, it will not increase your chances of becoming pregnant. Fewer than 1 in 10 women with this condition will be able to get pregnant. The chance of getting pregnant increases to 50% when you use a fertilized donor egg (an egg from another woman).
Call your health care provider if:
Published Date: April 19, 2022
Published By: John D. Jacobson, MD, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Loma Linda University School of Medicine, Loma Linda, CA. Also reviewed by David C. Dugdale, MD, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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