NAMS Study Confirms What Women in Menopause Already Know
I have a love/hate relationship with medicine and science. On the one hand, it’s pretty darn fascinating what science has taught us about the universe at large, especially in astronomy and space. And there is no doubt that when it comes to my healthcare, I am very happy to have been born in the era of what we call “modern medicine.”
In 1993, I gave birth to a premature baby who was born by caesarian section, due to what is called a “frank breech” position. That means her little baby buttocks were facing the birth canal, and her legs were straight up by her head. I know. Can you imagine?
Thanks to modern medical procedures, my little frank-breech-preemie came into this world healthy, safe, and sound. Had it been any other time in history, it’s highly possible that neither she nor I would have survived that experience. So when I say I’m thankful for modern medicine, I mean, I’m thankful.
Then there’s the other side of medicine -- the side that defies common sense and simple logic sometimes. The side of medicine that spends probably hundreds of thousands, if not even millions of dollars on research studies, only to document and verify what is painfully obvious to the most casual observer.
In the South, where I grew up, such medical tomfoolery would no doubt invoke a common colloquialism: “That boy’s got book learnin’ but he sho’ ain’t very smart.”
So it is with the latest study released by the North American Menopause Society (a group I pick on regularly, I know, so I apologize in advance) in their Menopause journal. The study looked at memory lapses in menopausal women and “objectively” concluded that “Yes, it is true. Menopause causes memory issues.”
So, look. I have no problem with these studies being done to objectively document what we (women in menopause) all know. It’s like having a “hard copy” of a conversation, or keeping the minutes of a meeting. Everyone who was there knows that it took place, but it’s helpful to have documentation to verify it.
However, I’m willing to bet that there was no need whatsoever to “prove” that women have memory loss issues during menopause. Just ask them. They’ll tell you. This where I feel medicine has its proverbial head up its butt. I guess I lean toward medical and research studies being limited to something that we just don’t know very much about, like certain cancers, and other life threatening diseases.
But if you want to know what the symptoms of perimenopause and menopause are, just ask women. And when they tell you, believe them! Save all of that money and time for something else more useful. Like, I don’t know, say, investing in the medical education of future physicians, so that they have a better understanding of what menopause is in the first place?
Magnolia Miller is a certified healthcare consumer advocate in women's health and a women's freelance health writer and blogger at The Perimenopause Blog.