Although menopause is a phenomenon predominantly studied in humans or laboratory animals, this chapter discussed the case of nonhuman primates (NHPs), not only with the objective of employing them as study models but also to better understand phylogenetic divergence among species. Those taxonomic differences are reflected in reproductive processes that may be similar to those of human beings, with the presence of a defined cycle or periods of estrus, but perhaps at different ages as well, where menopause plays a crucial role. First, it is important to delimit the concept of menopause by considering its anatomical, physiological, and biochemical parameters, including the cessation of menstrual bleeding or perineal swelling—when present—or follicular depletion and hormonal changes. Thus, the aim of this chapter is to discuss some of the similarities between NHPs and human females, during the menopause period. Studying these phenomena should help us achieve a better understanding of the social, physiological, and environmental factors without adopting any particular cultural view of menopause.
Part of the book: Menopause