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Title: A study investigating the impact and management of menopausal symptoms in North East Scotland
Author: Duffy, Oonagh
ISNI:       0000 0004 2707 3074
Awarding Body: University of Aberdeen
Current Institution: University of Aberdeen
Date of Award: 2011
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Introduction: Most women will experience symptoms at menopause, some will be bothersome. Little is known about the experience of menopausal symptoms in Scotland since the 2002 change in clinical guidelines for managing menopausal symptoms. This study aimed to reassess the impact and management of menopausal symptoms in the community, and identify factors associated with symptom experience. Methods: In 2009 a postal questionnaire was sent to 8,206 women aged 45-54, registered with 16 Scottish general practices. To validate the shortened illness perception measure, 360 respondents to the main survey were sent one of two postal questionnaires. Results: Most commonly reported symptoms were tiredness, aches and pains and sleep difficulties. The classic menopausal symptoms of hot flushes, night sweats and vaginal dryness were reported by 46.7%, 46.4% and 28.2% of women, respectively. Common menopausal symptom management strategies included talking to friends and family, wearing cotton clothes, sleeping in a cool room, and exercise. Herbal remedies were more commonly used than prescription drugs. Nearly one fifth of women had used HRT. Menopausal status, education, social support, reporting other symptoms, BMI, smoking status, use of management strategies, possible presence of depression, and physical health were associated with reporting classic menopausal symptoms. Factors associated with “doing well” or “doing badly” with hot flushes or night sweats was symptom dependent. Bother from menstrual periods, children, BMI, education, smoking, physical health, use of psychological strategies, and perceived consequences of symptoms were associated with “doing well” or “doing badly” with hot flushes or night sweats. The shortened IPQ-R scale had good reliability, moderate validity but poor internal consistency. Conclusion: Menopausal symptoms are common and often bothersome. Identifying women who appear to do well or badly with hot flushes and night sweats could be useful for tailoring interventions. A more robust measure of illness perceptions is needed.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Menopause