Menopause is the time that marks the end of a woman’s menstrual cycle. It is diagnosed after you have gone 12 months without a menstrual period, and can no longer become pregnant naturally. It usually begins between the age of 45 and 55 and can also develop before or after this age range.
A new study has discovered that most women now use cannabis or are willing to use it for managing their menopause symptoms. The result will be presented during the 2020 Virtual Annual Meeting of The North American Menopause Society (NAMS).
In a sample of 232 women (mean age, 55.95 y) in Northern California who participated in the Midlife Women Veterans Health Survey, more than half reported such bothersome symptoms as hot flashes and night sweats (54 percent), insomnia (27 percent), and genitourinary symptoms (69 per cent).
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About 27 per cent of those samples reported having used cannabis to manage their menopause symptoms. And in addition, 10 per cent of the participants expressed their interest in trying cannabis for managing their menopause symptoms.
On the other hand, only 19 per cent of them reported using hormone therapy which is a traditional type of menopause symptom management. Women reporting hot flashes and night sweats are often seen using cannabis for their menopause symptom management. This management symptom is used by all ages, race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and mental health condition.
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Carolyn Gibson, Ph.D., MPH, a psychologist and health services researcher at San Francisco VA Health Care System and the lead author of the study said, “These findings suggest that cannabis are used to manage menopause symptoms and may be relatively common. However, we do not know whether cannabis use is safe or effective for menopause symptom management or whether women are discussing these decisions with their healthcare providers–particularly in the VA, where cannabis is considered an illegal substance under federal guidelines. This information is important for healthcare providers, and more research in this area is needed.”
“This study highlights a somewhat alarming trend and the need for more research relative to the potential risks and benefits of cannabis use for the management of bothersome menopause symptoms,” said Dr. Stephanie Faubion, NAMS medical director.