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Menopause-Related Cognitive Impairment

Devi, Gayatri, MD

doi: 10.1097/AOG.0000000000002963
Menopause: Case Report: PDF Only

BACKGROUND: Identifying the cognitive changes associated with the menopausal transition prevents misattribution of symptoms to more ominous causes such as neurodegenerative disease.

CASE: Two women with cognitive loss and objective evidence of menopause-related cognitive impairment are presented, misattributed to Alzheimer disease in one case and frontotemporal dementia in the other. Neurocognitive testing, neuroimaging, and laboratory findings are reviewed. Both women were diagnosed with menopause-related cognitive impairment and were stable in follow-up over 4 or more years.

CONCLUSIONS: Recognizing the cognitive changes associated with menopause and distinguishing from cognitive impairment resulting from other etiologies—including neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer disease—has important clinical implications both for treatment and for prognosis.

Cognitive symptoms during the menopausal transition may mimic, and must be distinguished from, the impairment found in neurodegenerative disease.

Department of Neurology, SUNY Downstate Medical Center, and Lenox Hill Hospital, New York, New York.

Corresponding author: Gayatri Devi, MD, 65 E 76th Street, New York, NY 10021; email:

Financial Disclosure The author did not report any potential conflicts of interest.

The author has indicated that she has met the journal's requirements for authorship.

Peer review history is available at

Received June 26, 2018

Received in revised form August 25, 2018

Accepted August 29, 2018

© 2018 by The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Published by Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.