What are the symptoms of POI?

The first sign of POI is usually menstrual irregularities or missed periods,1 which is sometimes called amenorrhea (pronounced ey-men-uh-REE-uh or uh-men-uh-REE-uh).

In addition, some women with POI have symptoms similar to those experienced by women who are going through natural menopause, including:

  • Hot flashes
  • Night sweats
  • Irritability
  • Poor concentration
  • Decreased sex drive
  • Pain during sex
  • Vaginal dryness2,3

For many women with POI, trouble getting pregnant or infertility is the first symptom they experience and is what leads them to visit their health care provider. This is sometimes called “occult” (hidden) or early POI.4


  1. National Library of Medicine. (2011). Premature ovarian failure. Retrieved January 4, 2012, from http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/prematureovarianfailure.html
  2. American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. (2009). Premature ovarian failure: ACOG medical student teaching module [PowerPoint slides].
  3. National Center for Biotechnical Information. (2010). Ovarian hypofunction. Retrieved January 12, 2012, from https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/001165.htm
  4. De Vos, M., Devroey, P., & Fauser, B. C. (2010). Primary ovarian insufficiency. Lancet, 376, 911–921.

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