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Approved research

Understanding successful ageing in women: how do socioeconomic and cultural factors shape diversity in menopause experience?

Principal Investigator: Ms Abigail Fraser
Approved Research ID: 52405
Approval date: November 5th 2019

Lay summary

Menopause is a significant event in female ageing experience but is not currently studied in public health ageing studies. The proposed research aims to study how experiences of menopause may vary across social classes and cultural backgrounds, and how this may impact the lived experience of menopausal women. This project will approach menopause as a social and cultural experience as well as the biological event it is usually considered in the medical sciences. I will apply theories from the emerging field of evolutionary medicine to identify patterns of variation in menopause age and experience. These will focus on whether the number of periods a woman has during her lifetime may affect age of menopause, as well as whether her early life environment can also affect age of menopause. This research project will be completed by 2021. With this project I hope to create a better understanding of the lived experience of menopause for women in the UK, which can be used by public and private sector services to understand and create awareness for women going through the menopause, as well as seeking to find links between menopause experience and later life health outcomes. This can help identify groups of women who are at risk of certain diseases as they age, and can help to offer preventative healthcare to improve their quality of life.