Objectives: This Internet-based survey questioned middle-aged women (age 35-69) regarding their current attitudes, beliefs, symptoms, and treatment choices surrounding the climacteric.
Methods: 448 respondents completed the 189 item, WEB-based survey that included measures of quality of life, lifestyle habits, anxiety symptoms, and questions regarding attitude toward and sources of information about menopause.
Results: Three relationships were hypothesized and supported: frequency of self-reported menopause symptoms would be: (1) negatively associated with healthy behaviors; (2) positively associated with anxiety; (3) positively associated with stress. All measures were self-report. Fatigue, muscle and joint aches, and impatience were the most commonly reported symptoms. No particular symptom was strongly correlated (r > 0.4) to lifestyle behaviors. Questions regarding information exchange reveal that many women are not consulting with their healthcare providers about HRT or frequently discussing alternatives. Many receive health information from lay sources.
Conclusions: There is a need for improved information exchange on this subject. Our results are similar to those found using large randomized telephone survey methods, which supports the use of the Internet as a reliable and convenient venue for gathering data regarding health issues. It is important to consider healthy lifestyle behaviors toward the regulation of the climacteric syndrome.