According to a new study at the University of Texas at Austin, almost half of women who have discontinued hormone therapy for menopause but still have symptoms of menopause are turning to complementary and alternative medicine, commonly referred to as CAM.
45% of the women, who represented every U.S. state except Hawaii, reported using CAM to seek relief from menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes and night sweats.
Among the women using CAM, 27 percent reported taking vitamin and calcium supplements, 21 percent said they used the herbal supplement black cohosh, and 19 percent used soy supplements and foods for symptom relief.
Another 14 percent reported taking antidepressants for relief of menopausal symptoms, the investigators reported in the Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, and Neonatal Nursing.
The women who participated in the study were about 58 years old on average and had entered menopause about 14 years earlier. CAM users were more likely between 40 and 50 years old, and less than 5 years post-menopause.
Besides those already noted, other reported CAM therapies included meditation and relaxation, evening primrose oil, blood-pressure lowering medications, homeopathic treatments, red clover, and anti-seizure medications.
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