Menopause, the great unknown

By Audrey SomnardLex Kleren Switch to French for original article

Women's lives are punctuated by major stages. The arrival of menstruation during adolescence marks a major change, followed by the menopause when menstruation stops. Few are prepared for this final stage due to lack of information. However, solutions do exist.

Dr. Juliette Fievez is a gynaecologist at the CHL and the menopause clinic since 2017. With consultations one day a week, the service is always full. But the gynaecologist enjoys working as part of a team to help these women through the process. For her, it's also an opportunity to take stock. "Around the age of 50, these women are in pre- or menopause, they come with a lot of questions. It's a time in their lives when they often become aware of themselves."

The appointment is made at least with a doctor, a physiotherapist and a nurse. After an assessment in the form of a questionnaire, the physiotherapist performs an assessment of the perineum, an organ that can become damaged with time and possible pregnancies. While doing so, the nurse also has the opportunity to prevent diabetes and cardiovascular problems. "We are a privileged channel to the cardiologist if needed, or to have a mammogram. This allows us to have women who were not previously followed up."

And if some women feel lost, Dr. Fievez is not at all surprised, and tries to play it down. "Menopause has been a taboo for a very long time. It's a very hormonally intense time in life, and it's easy to lose your footing", she explains. For some women, it's a more difficult time than others: "It's often a period when the children start to leave home, which means a lot of changes. Sometimes hormonal treatments are enough, but sometimes more is needed, but it is very delicate to advise psychological support", admits the gynaecologist.

Continue reading for free

Get access to this article by subscribing to our newsletter that is sent twice a week. You also have to have a Journal account.

Already have an account?

Log in