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Onset of menopause

I am a 48 year old single woman and havent been sexually active. I was with someone about 12 years ago but were physically intimate just on a couple of occassions.the first time as expected had the usual bleeding along with some pain. I was recently with someone about 3 weeks ago but he could not penetrate and I started bleeding for about 15 min. There was also a lot of pain (a lot more than the first time). This caused me a lot of embarassment .Is this normal and will I get back to normal again. I seem to have missed my period which was due during these 3 weeks. I have missed my cycle only twice in the last 2 years possibly due to my age.My sexual urges over the last few years have diminished , part of this is probably psychological and partly menopausal. I am worried if I were to be in a relationship again it will not work if I cannot be normal sexually.Please advise.
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Venkat Raghav
General Physician Bangalore

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Hello. Perimenopause begins several years before menopause. It's the time when the ovaries gradually begin to make lessestrogen. It usually starts in a woman's 40s.Irregular bleeding ,loss of libido ,heavy bleeding with clots . Despite a decline in fertility during the perimenopause stage, you can still become pregnant. If you do not want to become pregnant, you should use some form of birth control until you reach menopause.Because you will not know whether missed period is due to pregnancy or some other reason. Libido decrease and its natural.
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