if serum prolactin is high, it should be remeasured; if serum FSH is high, it should be remeasured monthly at least twice. Amenorrhea with high FSH levels (hypergonadotropic hypogonadism) suggests ovarian dysfunction; amenorrhea with low FSH levels (hypogonadotropic hypogonadism) suggests hypothalamic or pituitary dysfunction. If patients have secondary amenorrhea without virilization and have normal prolactin and FSH levels and normal thyroid function, a trial of estrogen and a progestin to try to stimulate withdrawal bleeding can be done (progesterone challenge test) Hypertrichosis (excessive growth of hair on the extremities, head, and back), which is common in some families, is differentiated from true hirsutism, which is characterized by excess hair on the upper lip and chin and between the breasts.
Treatments vary based on the underlying condition. Key issues are problems of surgical correction if appropriate and oestrogen therapy if oestrogen levels are low. For those who do not plan to have biological children, treatment may be unnecessary if the underlying cause of the amenorrhoea is not threatening to their health. However, in the case of athletic amenorrhoea, deficiencies in estrogen and leptin often simultaneously result in bone loss, potentially leading to osteoporosis. "Athletic" amenorrhoea which is part of the female athlete triad is treated by eating more and decreasing the amount and intensity of exercise.
In preindustrial societies, menarche typically occurred later than in current industrial societies. After menarche, menstruation was suppressed during much of a woman's reproductive life by either pregnancy or nursing. Reductions in age of menarche and lower fertility rates mean that modern women menstruate far more often than they did under the conditions prevalent for most of human evolutionary history. The term is derived from Greek: a = negative, men = month, rhoia = flow. Derived adjectives are amenorrhoeal and amenorrhoeic. The opposite is the normal menstrual period.