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February 26, 1938


Author Affiliations


From the Department of Gynecology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

JAMA. 1938;110(9):619-622. doi:10.1001/jama.1938.02790090001001

The popular concept of the menopause, as is true of all aspects of the phenomenon of menstruation, has been based on folklore rather than on scientific fact, of which there was little until recent years. There is now, however, a growing appreciation of the fact that the "change of life" does not usually entail any very profound alteration in the woman's life current except that depending on the cessation of menstruation and of the reproductive function. The term "climacteric" would seem a more expressive one for this phase, derived as it is from a Greek word meaning "rung of a ladder" and indicating therefore merely that it represents one of the natural transitional steps which must inevitably be taken by every woman on her progress from the cradle to the grave, provided she lives long enough.

As a matter of fact, there are many women to whom the menopause comes

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