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J Nurs Res. 2012 Jun;20(2):81-9. doi: 10.1097/jnr.0b013e318254eb25.

The menopause transition experiences of Chinese Singaporean women: an exploratory qualitative study.

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1
Kandang Kerbau Women and Children's Hospital, Singapore.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Menopause, a developmental occurrence that takes place in midlife, marks the end of a woman's fertile phase. Cultural norms, social influences, and personal perceptions related to menopause may influence its meaning and how each woman experiences this transition. Little is known about the menopausal experiences of Asian women.

PURPOSE:

This study explores the menopause transition experiences of ethnic Chinese women in Singapore.

METHODS:

Using a qualitative design, the researchers conducted audio-taped interviews in 2010 with 14 menopausal and postmenopausal Chinese Singaporean women aged 40-60 years. Thematic analysis was used to analyze interviews.

RESULTS:

Two main themes were identified: (a) experiencing symptoms and (b) managing symptoms during menopause transition. The most commonly reported symptoms were abnormal bleeding, hot flushes, and emotional changes. Most participants described their transition to be uneventful and ordinary and reported two significant symptoms at most. The strategies women used to manage their transition included using Western and traditional Chinese medical interventions and seeking support from family and friends.

CONCLUSIONS:

This study provides new insights into how ethnic Chinese women in Singapore experience menopause transition. Findings can assist nurses and healthcare workers in the local context to better understand menopausal women's needs and guide nurses to implement suitable health promotional strategies for women under their care in both hospital and community settings.

IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE:

Although ethnicity is not necessarily a determinant of symptom experience during menopause transition, health education for menopausal women should be based on knowledge of culture-specific practices. Nurses caring for menopausal women in hospital and community settings in Singapore should evaluate the use of medications prescribed by Western and Chinese herbal medical professionals as well as those that are self-prescribed.

PMID:
22592103
DOI:
10.1097/jnr.0b013e318254eb25
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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