Menopause: More Than Just Vasomotor Symptoms
Malacan J1, Bolling KR2, Haberland C3, Gaianu L4, Smith N5, Woods M6, Smith M7
1Bayer Consumer Carer AG, Basel, Switzerland, 2Bayer U.S. LLC, Whippany, NJ, USA, 3Bayer AG, Berlin, BE, Germany, 4Bayer Public Limited Company, Reading, UK, 5Lumanity, Cheshire, CHW, UK, 6Lumanity, Sheffield, NYK, UK, 7Lumanity, London, UK
OBJECTIVES: Vasomotor symptoms (VMS) associated with menopause affect women’s quality of life (QoL) and are often the focus of discussion. However, factors including other symptoms, ongoing social stigma and lack of awareness and support, also have an important impact making menopause more challenging. This research synthesizes evidence on the burden of menopause beyond VMS, focusing on the impact of menopause on individuals and wider society.
METHODS: Literature searches were performed to expand upon a targeted burden of illness review (described in Malacan et al. 2023), including supplementary grey literature searches, to synthesise evidence on the impact of menopause beyond VMS.
RESULTS: Results suggest that menopausal transition is a complex time with over 30 different symptoms identified. Up to 94% of menopausal women worldwide experience disrupted sleep and 51–54% suffer from anxiety and depression. These menopausal symptoms impact daily activities, with partnerships and familial relationships affected; 23% of menopausal women reported feeling isolated from their family and 77% of spouses reported feeling negatively affected by their partners’ menopause symptoms. Menopause also has wider societal impacts caused by lost productivity (over USD 2.2 billion; 2021) and workdays missed (over USD 1.8 billion; 2023). In the UK (2014–2021), only 9% of women feel appropriately informed on menopause and 47–80% of employed women take time off due to menopause but hide the real reason. These findings highlight the social stigma that still exists around menopause and the need for increased support.
CONCLUSIONS: In line with previous research, the burden of menopause relates to a variety of symptoms and their impact on QoL, with considerable implications to society. The total impact, particularly from an economic perspective, is likely to be underreported. Increased awareness and policies are needed to support women experiencing menopause in the workplace and in their everyday lives.
Conference/Value in Health Info
Value in Health, Volume 26, Issue 11, S2 (December 2023)
Economic Evaluation, Health Policy & Regulatory, Patient-Centered Research, Study Approaches
Health Disparities & Equity, Literature Review & Synthesis, Patient-reported Outcomes & Quality of Life Outcomes, Work & Home Productivity - Indirect Costs
No Additional Disease & Conditions/Specialized Treatment Areas, Reproductive & Sexual Health