Case study ( 4914 views as of April 21, 2019 )
Trudy is a 54-year-old woman who comes to see her family doctor with ongoing issues of poor sleep, hot flashes, night sweats and increasing irritability. Her last period was 2 years earlier and she has tried a number of over-the-counter remedies, such as evening primrose oil and red clover. These have had minimal benefit. She has been reluctant to consider hormones, worrying about the side effects. She is otherwise healthy, a non-smoker, and active when not so tired and anxious. She is particularly upset as her spouse is becoming affected by her mood and discomfort and she is aware that their quality of life, both personally and as a couple, has deteriorated. Her symptoms have become disabling.
One of the first recommendations is for Trudy to seek help from her pharmacist. Likely she can try some options for sleep, such as valerian, and may get some relief. It is important to utilize lifestyle options such as dressing in layers, considering physiotherapy to improve flexibility and general activity levels and avoiding triggers, if possible.
A new option for hot flashes is the Canadian-made, “Menopod”, a cooling handheld device designed to quickly lower body temperature. Trudy should also meet with her doctor or primary care provider to consider prescription medication.Author: Dr. Vivien Brown