Can time to menopause be predicted?

Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand. 2021 Nov;100(11):1961-1968. doi: 10.1111/aogs.14253. Epub 2021 Sep 21.


Menopause represents the definite end of a woman's reproductive life and the onset of a persistent hypoestrogenic state. This postmenopausal period will for most women last several decades. Although mean menopausal age seems to have increased somewhat during the last century, there is a significant individual variation in age at natural menopause. With efficient contraception, women of reproductive age can now, to some extent, choose when they want to have children. As a consequence of this and other sociodemographic changes, age at first birth has increased significantly over the last 50 years. It is well documented that long before a woman enters the menopausal transition and subsequent menopause, fertility declines and finally ceases. Being able to predict when a woman will enter menopause would therefore, from a reproductive perspective, be of major interest. Several sociodemographic, morphometric, and endocrine factors are associated with age at menopause or time to menopause. Unfortunately the sensitivity and specificity of these in predicting time to or age at menopause are low. Therefore, with the exception of anti-Müllerian hormone measurements, either alone or in combination with chronological age close to menopause, there are as of now no reliable ways of predicting when a woman will enter menopause.

Keywords: Anti-Müllerian hormone; follicle-stimulating hormone; follicles; inhibin; menarche; menopause; ovary.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Anti-Mullerian Hormone / blood*
  • Female
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone / blood
  • Humans
  • Menopause / blood*
  • Middle Aged
  • Predictive Value of Tests


  • Anti-Mullerian Hormone
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone