Research Article

Psychiatric morbidity and the menopause; screening of general population sample.

BMJ 1975; 3 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.3.5979.344 (Published 09 August 1975) Cite this as: BMJ 1975;3:344
  1. C B Ballinger

    Abstract

    A survey of 539 women from the general population indicated a high prevalence of minor psychiatric illness in women aged 40-55 years. There was evidence of an increase in psychiatric morbidity occurring before the menopause and lasting until about one year after menstrual periods had ended. Vasomotor symptoms increased dramatically when periods stopped and persisted up to five years after the menopause. Both these features seemed to have a clear relation to the menopause but not the same relation. The findings suggested that further investigation of the relation between perimenopausal hormonal changes and psychiatric morbidity should be directed towards premenopausal women. Environmental factors, particularly in relation to children, seemed to be associated with increased psychiatric morbidity at this time of life.