Research Update

October 2017

We have now interviewed 14 women, and have another four women booked in for interviews – it’s a busy time! We thought we’d share a bit about who we’ve been talking with, as they have been a really varied group.

In terms of cause of early menopause, five women experienced spontaneous EM, five
experienced either ovarian suppression or EM following breast cancer treatment, three experienced EM following surgical removal of the ovaries for ovarian cancer, and one woman went into EM as a result of a hysterectomy following damage to her ovaries caused by severe endometriosis.

Three women were from regional Victoria, and 11 from metropolitan Melbourne. They were aged between 32 and 49 at the time of the interview, and the average age at which they were diagnosed with early menopause was 37. Ten women were born in Australia and four overseas, while thirteen women identified as being from Australian,  British or Canadian backgrounds and one woman as from a Chinese background.

Eight women had children, while six did not (of these, five had wanted to have children). Four women were single, and ten were married or in a de facto relationship.  Most were in paid employment – some full-time, some part-time, and a couple in casual or voluntary roles. One woman was not working as had only recently completed cancer treatment.

In our next post, we’ll provide a snapshot of the health professionals we’ve interviewed so far.

 

MCHRI online surveys

Our research partners at the Monash Centre for Health Research and Implementation (MCHRI) are recruiting participants for online surveys on women’s experiences of early menopause and the perspectives of health professionals! Details below.

WOMEN

We are recruiting women with experiences of early or premature menopause to participate in two short anonymous surveys. You may be eligible if you:

  • have been diagnosed early (menopause before age 45) or premature menopause (menopause before age 40 years; also referred to as premature ovarian insufficiency / failure), whether spontaneous or following medical treatment (e.g. chemotherapy, radiotherapy or surgical removal of the ovaries)
  • are aged 20 years or over
  1. The first survey will help develop a “Question Prompt List” which is a list of questions that women can ask their clinician to obtain information regarding early menopause and can improve communication between women and their health providers. Click here to participate.
  2. The second survey will help develop online resources / tools for women regarding early / premature menopause and bone health. Click here to participate.

If you are interested in participating, and / or would like more information on this project, please click on “survey links” above.

You can also email us: MCHRI-earlymenopausestudy@monash.edu.

HEALTH PROFESSIONALS

We are looking for health professionals who are involved in the care of women who have early (menopause before age 45 years) or premature menopause / premature ovarian insufficiency (menopause before age 40 years), whether spontaneous or following medical treatment (e.g. chemotherapy, radiotherapy or surgical removal of the ovaries) to participate in a short anonymous survey regarding early/premature menopause and bone health.

Your participation will help increase the understanding, awareness and improve management of premature menopause associated low bone density / osteoporosis. Based on the information we gather, we will develop online resources / tools for women and health professionals regarding premature menopause and bone health.

If you are interested in participating, and / or would like more information on this project, please click here.

You can also email us: MCHRI-earlymenopausestudy@monash.edu.

 

Our first Reference Group meeting

 

On a cold winter morning in late June, the Early Menopause Project’s Reference Group met for the first time over tea, coffee, muffins and fruit.

This very important group will help guide the research and advise on recruitment. Members represent project partner organisations (NBCF, BCNA, WHV, Healthdirect, AMS, ESA & Monash Health), women with EM, health professionals who work with women with EM, Jean Hailes for Women’s Health, DHHS (Victoria) and the Multicultural Centre for Women’s Health.

The researchers, having completed their first batch of interviews, presented a progress report and outlined some initial findings, including a selection of video clips. In response, the Reference Group provided some excellent advice and thoughtful feedback.

To learn more about the group’s members, please see here (scroll down to ‘Reference Group’).