New Study: Latinas Suffer From Menopause Symptoms Longer Than Most Other Groups

New Study: Latinas Suffer From Menopause Symptoms Longer Than Most Other Groups
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A shocking new study suggests that women may experience symptoms of menopause for far longer than previously thought — and Hispanic women may suffer for longer than others. 

The study, published in JAMA Internal Medicine, reported that more than half of women experience frequent menopausal vasomotor symptoms (VMA), such as hot flashes and night sweats. Researchers determined the median for VMS duration to be about 7.4 years. However, they found that African American and Hispanic women suffer for even longer than that. In fact, 50 percent of African American women reported symptoms that lasted nearly 10 years, and Latinas reported a median VMS duration of nearly nine years. Meanwhile, non-white Hispanic women reported symptoms lasting about six years. 

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The lengthy duration of symptoms shocked the researchers. "We were a little surprised at the extent, but it's important to recognize that there is huge variation," Dr. Nancy Avis of Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center and lead author of the study told Reuters Health"Some [women] never have them, and some have them many times throughout the day."

Conventional wisdom holds that these symptoms have only a minimal impact upon quality of life. However, new research suggests that many women experience interruption of sleep, fatigue, and reduced ability to perform daily activities for several years because of menopause. 

Researchers urge women to speak to their doctors if they experience bothersome symptoms. Read more at Reuters