Menopause Toolkit Could Be Treatment Breakthrough
A team of experts at Monash University has created what is believed to be the first-ever menopause toolkit. This so-called “bag of tricks” has the potential to help doctors assist women anywhere in the world in the treatment and management of menopause symptoms.
This breakthrough is known as the Practitioner Toolkit for Managing the Menopause, and the details are available in the journal Climacteric. Women everywhere will want to get the scoop on this development, whether they are premenopausal or actively in the menopause stage of life.
The toolkit was created because, according to Professor Susan Davis from the School of Public Health and Preventative Medicine, general practitioners don’t have the time to go through the extensive menopause guidelines with patients. Another hurdle women face is that healthcare professionals do not receive much training in the management of menopause. Therefore, the authors explained that “our aim was to produce a toolkit for practitioners that could be used during office consultations to assist them in the assessment and management of the menopause.”
The introduction of the menopause toolkit could therefore mean significant improvements in how women deal with menopause. Each woman goes through this natural phase of life in her own unique way. In fact, menopause is associated with dozens of different symptoms that can range from mild to severe and last from moments to days, weeks, months, or even years, so the possibilities are endless.
The menopause toolkit
The menopause toolkit consists of the following items, each of which is in flow chart form:
- Standardized questions healthcare providers can ask to help them evaluate their patients who may be experiencing menopause. The chart allows for other reasons menstruation has stopped, such as hysterectomy and hormonal factors
- An assessment tool that helps physicians gather the information needed to help make a diagnosis. This includes all the data to be considered regarding medical history, examinations, and any investigations/testing (if necessary)
- Treatment options that take into account both hormonal and non-hormonal methods for premenopause, perimenopause (the time from when the menstrual cycle becomes irregular until one year after the menstrual period), and menopause, and for women with or without a uterus.
- Symptom management options that allow for differences among countries regarding availability of hormonal and non-hormonal treatments and regulations concerning their use. Information concerning low, medium, and high doses of various hormone options is provided as well as evidence-based, non-hormonal treatment ideas for vasomotor symptoms.
- Information for both doctors and patients concerning the risks and benefits of each treatment option
The International Menopause Society is actively promoting the menopause toolkit for doctors around the world. Any woman who has questions about premenopause, perimenopause, or menopause and/or who is experiencing symptoms should ask their healthcare provider about the new menopause toolkit. Women also can see the details of the menopause toolkit in Climacteric.
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Jane FM and Davis SR. A practitioner’s toolkit for managing the menopause. Climacteric 2014 July 6. DOI:10.3109/13697137.2014.929651