Societies celebrate World Menopause Day

Since 1999, Oct. 18 has marked World Menopause Day. This year, the North American Menopause Society, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine and the International Menopause Society have prepared resources to help women learn more about the condition.

"While each woman's experience of menopause is unique, one thing is true for all women," Margery L.S. Gass, MD, executive director of the North American Menopause Society (NAMS), said in a press release. "Menopause presents an ideal opportunity for women to evaluate their personal health and improve their lifestyle. Taking informed steps will transform and enhance every woman's sense of well-being, not only around menopause, but for the rest of her life."

On its website, NAMS has put together a collection of resources with both basic and in-depth information on menopause, including a menopause primer for the busy woman, a new guide for weighing the benefits and risks of hormone therapy, a comprehensive online resource on menopause and sexual health, a list of common menopause myths, answers to frequently asked questions and educational information in French and Spanish.

Also in recognition of World Menopause Day, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) and the International Menopause Society (IMS) released a comprehensive review in Climacteric of evidence regarding treatments for vasomotor symptoms, including hot flushes and night sweats, experienced during menopause.

"Vasomotor symptoms are a major source of concern for many women worldwide," Roger A. Lobo, MD, ASRM president and one of the report's researchers, said in a press release. "It is most appropriate for IMS to bring this to the attention of the general public during the celebration of World Menopause Day."

According to the report, incidence of vasomotor symptoms varies widely with ethnic and cultural backgrounds. However, approximately 25% of women experience these issues, the researchers said, all of which can seriously decrease quality of life. The review highlights estrogen replacement therapy as the most effective treatment option, stating that up to 90% of symptoms in the studies analyzed were abolished by 3 months after treatment. Selective serotonin and selective norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors and gabapentin also appeared more effective than placebo. The researchers, however, warned against using some alternative therapies, specifically bioidentical hormones, to alleviate symptoms.

"Too often the distressing symptoms associated with menopause are not taken seriously enough," Tobie J. de Villiers, MBChB, IMS president, said in a press release. "A woman can't just 'grin and bear it' - if only it were that simple. Women need to realize that they don't need to put up with this. For most women, there are ways of overcoming these problems, and a woman going through a difficult menopause should make sure that she talks this over with her doctor to find the best solution for her."

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Since 1999, Oct. 18 has marked World Menopause Day. This year, the North American Menopause Society, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine and the International Menopause Society have prepared resources to help women learn more about the condition.

"While each woman's experience of menopause is unique, one thing is true for all women," Margery L.S. Gass, MD, executive director of the North American Menopause Society (NAMS), said in a press release. "Menopause presents an ideal opportunity for women to evaluate their personal health and improve their lifestyle. Taking informed steps will transform and enhance every woman's sense of well-being, not only around menopause, but for the rest of her life."

On its website, NAMS has put together a collection of resources with both basic and in-depth information on menopause, including a menopause primer for the busy woman, a new guide for weighing the benefits and risks of hormone therapy, a comprehensive online resource on menopause and sexual health, a list of common menopause myths, answers to frequently asked questions and educational information in French and Spanish.

Also in recognition of World Menopause Day, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) and the International Menopause Society (IMS) released a comprehensive review in Climacteric of evidence regarding treatments for vasomotor symptoms, including hot flushes and night sweats, experienced during menopause.

"Vasomotor symptoms are a major source of concern for many women worldwide," Roger A. Lobo, MD, ASRM president and one of the report's researchers, said in a press release. "It is most appropriate for IMS to bring this to the attention of the general public during the celebration of World Menopause Day."

According to the report, incidence of vasomotor symptoms varies widely with ethnic and cultural backgrounds. However, approximately 25% of women experience these issues, the researchers said, all of which can seriously decrease quality of life. The review highlights estrogen replacement therapy as the most effective treatment option, stating that up to 90% of symptoms in the studies analyzed were abolished by 3 months after treatment. Selective serotonin and selective norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors and gabapentin also appeared more effective than placebo. The researchers, however, warned against using some alternative therapies, specifically bioidentical hormones, to alleviate symptoms.

"Too often the distressing symptoms associated with menopause are not taken seriously enough," Tobie J. de Villiers, MBChB, IMS president, said in a press release. "A woman can't just 'grin and bear it' - if only it were that simple. Women need to realize that they don't need to put up with this. For most women, there are ways of overcoming these problems, and a woman going through a difficult menopause should make sure that she talks this over with her doctor to find the best solution for her."

For more information:

Twitter Follow EndocrineToday.com on Twitter.