During the menopausal transition, there is a greater likelihood of the prevalence of various bothersome symptoms, including vasomotor symptoms (VMS) and mood symptoms.
To investigate the association among bother from VMS and symptoms of anxiety and depression in Chinese women during perimenopause and early in menopause.
This study included 430 midlife Chinese women who had experienced natural menopause and were followed up for 10 years. A structured questionnaire was provided annually, comprising the VMS Bother Score (range 1-8) from Menopause-Specific Quality of Life questionnaire, the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, and other physical and behavioral factors.
Among the 430 women evaluated, 78.8% had experienced VMS during long-term follow-up. The overall level of VMS bother score was relatively low (1.92±1.32). Both anxiety and depressive symptoms were significantly associated with VMS bother. After adjusting for potential covariates, the association between anxiety or depression symptoms and VMS bother remained highly significant. Menopausal stage, body mass index, general health, follicle-stimulating hormone, and estradiol were independent contributors to VMS. In time-lagged (1-year) models, VMS bother scores significantly predicted the risk of symptoms of both anxiety and depression the following year. In contrast, anxiety symptoms, rather than depressive symptoms, could predict VMS bother the following year.
The prevalence of VMS in our cohort was higher than previously reported; however, the overall level of bother was relatively low. This study demonstrated a strong relationship between VMS bother and mood symptoms in Chinese women progressing from perimenopause through natural menopause.
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