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Climacteric. 2008;11(6):467-74. doi: 10.1080/13697130802351094.

The menopause symptom profile of Maori and non-Maori women in New Zealand.

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Women's Health Research Centre, University of Otago, Wellington, New Zealand.



To describe menopause symptoms in postmenopausal Maori and non-Maori New Zealand women, and explore relationships between symptoms, sociodemographic profile and hormone replacement therapy (HRT) use.


Cross-sectional analysis of data collected during recruitment of women from 27 primary-care practices into an observational study and the international WISDOM trial of postmenopausal HRT.


A total of 3616 women aged 49-70 years (mean 58.9 years) were recruited between 1999 and 2004. Maori and non-Maori participants differed in demographic and clinical characteristics, but few differences were observed in the frequency of menopause-related symptoms. Vasomotor symptoms (hot flushes and/or night sweats) were reported by 34.4% of women, with no statistically significant difference between Maori and non-Maori (controlling for demographic variables, p > 0.05). Compared to non-Maori, Maori were less likely to have ever used HRT (24% vs. 54%), and only 5% of Maori reported current HRT use compared to 30% of non-Maori (p < 0.05).


Maori and non-Maori have the same rate of self-reported vasomotor symptoms despite differences in factors thought to influence the experience of menopause symptoms. Differences in HRT use between Maori and non-Maori need to be further explored to identify contributing factors and whether, in turn, these factors impact on quality of life.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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