Q: What are common causes of joint pain in women over 40?
Marla Ahlgrimm: As the body’s hormone production naturally decreases, many women experience aches and pains in their joints, muscles and connective tissues. Joint pain in menopausal women may be caused by diminished estrogen levels. Estrogen is important for the body’s creation of synovial fluid, the liquid that lubricates the joints.
Q: Which is better for joint pain, synthetic or bioidentical hormones?
Marla Ahlgrimm: While synthetic estrogens and progestin have been prescribed by doctors for decades, they may actually exacerbate the symptoms of unexplained joint pain. Bioidentical hormones—those a woman naturally produces—are a much better option. Minor or infrequent joint pain may be managed with exercise, diet changes and the occasional use of anti-inflammatory medication.