Alternative approaches to the menopause

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Many women would prefer to avoid hormone replacement therapy (HRT) in response to recent publications and instead seek alternative approaches to treat menopause symptoms and the long-term effects of the menopause. Possible options include other pharmacological treatments; however, many of these women would prefer to avoid these too. As there are big cultural variations in the menopause experience, there has been much interest in diet and life style factors that may contribute to this difference. A growing number of women use complementary and alternative therapies either in response to the media hype or disappointment in orthodox medicine, thinking that they provide a safe, natural option. However, they do have the potential for harm, in addition to failing to offer any benefit. Unlike HRT that treats every menopause symptom, often women will have to pursue a number of different alternatives to improve a number of symptoms, needing commitment and patience. Women on low incomes are disadvantaged as rarely alternative treatments are available on the NHS. It is important as health practitioners to ask patients if they are using alternative treatments, particularly herbal remedies that may interact with other medication or have side effects. © 2004 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.




Brockie, J. (2005). Alternative approaches to the menopause. Reviews in Gynaecological Practice. Elsevier USA.

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