Many women say the “brain fog” of menopause feels like dementia, but an innovative psychiatrist has a different explanation.
Forgetful? Can’t focus? Many women say the “brain fog” of menopause feels like dementia, but an innovative psychiatrist has a different explanation.
First, here’s the background story, taken from this article in the Philadephia Inquirer:
“After C. Neill Epperson, a psychiatrist who directs the Penn Center for Women’s Behavioral Wellness, listened to many patients complain about their brains as they approached and entered menopause, she had an idea.
Women would tell her that they couldn’t juggle as much as they used to. They had to write something down instantly or the thought would disappear. They felt foggy and disorganized. Some worried that they had dementia.
The symptoms didn’t sound like dementia to Epperson, but they did sound like something else: attention deficit disorder.”
So Epperson tried treating them with a drug used to treat ADHD, and guess what? For many women, it worked.
Epperson attributes the decline in brain function during menopause to a drop in estrogen levels, but most women return to their baseline within a few years.
The research hasn’t been published yet, and is still in its very early stages, but the results are promising.
We at HFD will keep you posted as this develops further.