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Menopause Is More Than A Hot Flash

NORTH WALES, Penn., July 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Many often equate menopause with hot flashes, night sweats and mood swings, but a recent survey shows that a spectrum of menopause symptoms and their severity can have an overwhelmingly negative impact on every aspect of women's lives. According to the "Menopause Impact Survey", sponsored by Duramed Pharmaceuticals, Inc., (now Teva Women's Health, Inc.) a subsidiary of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, Ltd. (Nasdaq: TEVA) and conducted by Yankelovich Inc., part of The Futures Company, a majority of women reported their menopause symptoms negatively impacted their personal health and well-being (67%); sex life (58%) and relationship with their significant other (52%).

While many women accept menopause as a part of life, a majority were surprised by the timing and impact that menopause had on their lives, with two-thirds of women reporting being unprepared for the symptoms and impact of menopause. Overall, the impact of menopause on their sex life surprised women the most -- more than one-third of women reported that their sex life has been negatively impacted by menopause more than they expected.

"While women theoretically understand that they will experience menopause, many underestimate the symptoms they may experience and how they will be impacted physically and emotionally," says David Portman, MD, Director and Principal Investigator of the Columbus Center for Women's Health Research. "Some studies have shown that women can have upwards of a dozen moderate-to-severe hot flashes a day, with each one lasting a few minutes. It is no wonder symptomatic women report such an impact on their lives and relationships."

Older women with partners are more likely to report feeling the impact of vaginal symptoms on their sexual relationships. This is likely caused by a decrease in estrogen as women age, which can lead to vaginal dryness and atrophy, a thinning of the vaginal walls. These symptoms not only impact a woman's sex life, but they can interfere with the emotional aspects of relationships as well. In the survey, some women reported that their menopause symptoms prevented intimacy within the relationship.

"The transition into menopause begins when women begin ceasing to produce estrogen. Symptoms such as hot flashes and night sweats are more common at the beginning stages, and for most women, will subside over time," stated Portman. "However, as estrogen continues to decline women will, if left untreated, experience more severe vaginal dryness and atrophy, which can lead to pain with sex. This varied spectrum of symptoms shows the need for women to partner with their healthcare provider in order to find the appropriate treatment."

Menopause also negatively impacts the core of a woman's physical and emotional well-being, even her confidence and self-esteem. In particular, 87% of women experience anxiety, depression and mood swings, and these symptoms negatively impact their relationships, family life and career.

"What's interesting about this survey is that so many women reported that menopause impacted their interpersonal relationships, sex lives and social lives," says Bob Berkowitz, a relationship expert and noted author. "Both the physical and emotional symptoms can interfere in a woman's life to the point where they impact a woman's self esteem. That's why it's so important for women to be open with those in their lives, especially their partners and healthcare providers. And most importantly, remember they are not alone."

The Menopause Impact Tool

Every woman's menopause is unique, both in symptoms and the impact on their lives, which is why it is important to discuss symptoms and their impact with their healthcare providers. The Menopause Impact Tool is a simple questionnaire that is designed to help facilitate a dialogue between a woman and her healthcare provider by assessing her menopause symptoms and the overall impact on her life. It also serves as a catalyst to help women improve the quality of the time they have with their healthcare provider during office visits. Women can go to to use the tool and print a one-page analysis. The analysis can be shared with their healthcare provider on their next office visit.

About the Survey

The Menopause Impact Survey was sponsored by Duramed Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Yankelovich Inc., part of The Futures Company, conducted the online survey in the U.S. between April 23, 2009 and April 28, 2009 among 2,500 U.S. women aged 45-70. Of these women, 21% are perimenopausal and 79% are postmenopausal. Results for both groups were weighted as needed for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, region and household income. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents' propensity to be online. A full methodology is available.

About Menopause

Menopause is the time in a woman's life when the menstrual period ceases and the ovaries permanently stop releasing eggs. Menopause is considered complete when a woman has been without her period for a full year. While some women experience no menopausal symptoms, others suffer severe symptoms that require treatment. Vasomotor symptoms (hot flashes and night sweats) and vaginal atrophy are the most common menopausal symptoms. Although the majority of women experience "natural" or spontaneous menopause, some women may experience menopause due to a medical intervention such as surgery, chemotherapy or radiation. For more information about menopause please visit

About Survey Partners

The Futures Company delivers measurable breakthroughs in marketing productivity for Fortune 500 clients. We identify for our clients specific, tangible opportunities for competitive advantage by moving them from simplistic targeting to advanced productivity solutions. The Futures Company was established in 2008 with the merger of Yankelovich, Inc., and Henley Centre HeadlightVision, creating an unparalleled global consultancy powered by unique database and segmentation solutions and unparalleled information-based insights into consumer motivations and lifestyles.

About Duramed Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Now Teva Women's Health, Inc.)

Duramed Pharmaceuticals, Inc., (now Teva Women's Health, Inc.) which develops and markets proprietary pharmaceutical products in North America, focuses primarily on products for women and emphasizes the development and marketing of products for reproductive and menopausal needs. Currently, Duramed markets 27 proprietary pharmaceutical products.

Duramed is a subsidiary of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd., headquartered in Israel, is among the top 20 pharmaceutical companies in the world and is the world's leading generic pharmaceutical company. The Company develops, manufactures and markets generic and innovative human pharmaceuticals and active pharmaceutical ingredients, as well as animal health pharmaceutical products. Over 80 percent of Teva's sales are in North America and Europe.

SOURCE Teva Women's Health, Inc.
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