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West Afr J Med. 2003 Sep;22(3):225-31.

Psychosocial factors associated with perceived psychological health, perception of menopause and sexual satisfaction in menopausal women and controls.

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Clinical Psychology Unit, Department of Psychology, Faculty of the Social Sciences, University of Ibadan.



The study investigated factors associated with attitude towards sex-role, self-image and marital satisfaction on psychological health status, perception of menopause and sexual satisfaction in climacteric women in Ibadan, Nigeria.


45 female participants were randomly selected from Ibadan. The mean age was 51.42 +/- 8.05 years (range = 36 - 70 years). The mean age for the 13 non-menopausal women was 42.79 +/- 3. 91 years (range = 42 - 47 years) while the mean age for the 32 menopausal women was 5.16 +/- 6.08 years (range = 47 - 70 years). The mean age of the children of the participants was 16.05 +/- 8.09 years (range = 1 - 36 years). A questionnaire having several subsections (consisting of the psychological health status of women in the climacteric, attitude towards sex role, perception of menopause, social support, marital satisfaction, self-image and sexuality scales was used for the assessment.


Post-Menopausal women reported better psychological health compared to the pre-menopausal women (t = 1.86, p < .05) but no significant differences in their attitude to sex role. Post menopausal women had more positive attitude to sex (t = 3.15, p < .01) and were more knowledgeable about menopause (t = 2.15, p < .03). Women with conservative/reactionary preference for traditional sex roles reported negative perception of menopause compared to those with liberal attitude toward sex role (t = 1.82, p < 0.05). Menopausal Status, Educational level and social support predicted positive attitude to sex, (F = 3.62, P < .01). Age, self-image and attitude to sex domain of the marital satisfaction scale predicted better psychological health, and marital cordiality predicted better psychological health as measured by GIIQ (R2 = 25, beta = -43, t = -2.38, P < .02). Marital satisfaction significantly predicted better sexuality, (F = 5.47, R square = 0.11, p <0.05). Sources of information on menopause included health institutions, books, doctors, and books/health workers.


The study highlights the need for sensitizing menopausal Nigerian women on how to improve their self-image, marital satisfaction, and sexual satisfaction. Conventional treatment options emphasizing hormone replacement therapy, need for nutritional supplement, dietary changes, marital and sex therapy are emphasized.

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