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Impact of Menopause Symptoms on Women in the Workplace
Mayo Clinic Proceedings Vol 98, Issue 6, June 2023, Pages 833-845 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mayocp.2023.02.025
Stephanie S. Faubion MD, MBA a d, Felicity Enders PhD b, Mary S. Hedges MD c, Rajeev Chaudhry MBBS, MPH d e, Juliana M. Kling MD, MPH d f, Chrisandra L. Shufelt MD, MS a d, Mariam Saadedine MD a d, Kristin Mara MS b, Joan M. Griffin PhD g, Ekta Kapoor MBBS d h i
To evaluate the impact of menopause symptoms on work outcomes and to assess the estimated economic impact.
Patients and Methods
Women aged 45 to 60 years receiving primary care at 1 of the 4 Mayo Clinic sites were invited to participate in a survey study (Hormones and ExpeRiences of Aging) from March 1 through June 30, 2021. A total of 32,469 surveys were sent, with 5219 responses (16.1% response rate). Of the 5219 respondents, 4440 (85.1%) reported current employment information and were included in the study. The primary outcome was self-reported adverse work outcomes related to menopause symptoms assessed by the Menopause Rating Scale (MRS).
The mean age of the 4440 participants was 53.9±4.5 years, with the majority being White (4127 [93.0%]), married (3398 [76.5%]), and educated (2632 [59.3%] college graduate or higher); the mean total MRS score was 12.1, signifying moderate menopause symptom burden. Overall, 597 women (13.4%) reported at least one adverse work outcome due to menopause symptoms; 480 women (10.8%) reported missing work in the preceding 12 months (median, 3 days missed). The odds of reporting an adverse work outcome increased with increasing menopause symptom severity; women in the highest quartile of total MRS scores were 15.6 (95% CI, 10.7 to 22.7; P<.001) times more likely to have an adverse work outcome vs those in the first quartile. Based on workdays missed due to menopause symptoms, we estimate an annual loss of $1.8 billion in the United States.
This large cross-sectional study identified a major negative impact of menopause symptoms on work outcomes and the need to improve medical treatment for these women and make the workplace environment more supportive. Additional studies are needed to confirm these findings in larger and more diverse groups of women.
Study Design and Participants
We conducted a one-time survey study among women aged 45 to 60 years receiving primary care at 1 of 4 Mayo Clinic sites—Rochester, Minnesota; Scottsdale, Arizona; Jacksonville, Florida; and Mayo Clinic Health System, Northwest Wisconsin. The women were invited to complete a questionnaire between March 1 and June 30, 2021, that aimed to assess their menopause experiences and their perceptions about the care they received. The questionnaire assessed menopause symptoms, the impact of these...
Of the 32,469 surveys sent, 5219 responses were received (16.1%); 4440 (85.1%) of the respondents reported current employment and were included in the study. The demographic characteristics of the women in the study are summarized in Table 1. The mean age of the 4440 participants was 53.9±4.5 years, and the majority were White (4127 [93.0%]), married (3398 [76.5%]), and educated (2632 [59.3%] college graduate or higher). The mean total MRS score was 12.1, signifying moderate menopause symptom...
To our knowledge, this is the largest study to date examining the impact of menopause symptoms on work outcomes. Employed US women receiving primary care at a large medical center across 4 geographic locations reported a substantial menopause symptom burden and a negative impact of these symptoms on work outcomes. Women who reported adverse work outcomes had a higher BMI and were less likely to be married or to consume alcohol regularly compared with those without an adverse work outcome. The...
Women are a vital part of the global workforce and economy. This study identified an association between menopause symptoms and adverse work outcomes, including lost work productivity. The severity of menopause symptoms strongly predicted the odds of an adverse work outcome. Based on this analysis, the estimated annual cost associated with lost days of work related to menopause symptoms among US women aged 45 to 60 years is $1.8 billion. Racial and ethnic differences were identified, with Black ...
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