According to a new survey Kindra conducted with The Harris Poll, 1 in 3 women aged 45-54 (the typical age range for the menopause transition) have been diagnosed with a healthcare condition by a healthcare provider before finding out it was actually menopause causing their symptoms.
The survey also found that 32 percent of women are worried that their healthcare provider is not knowledgeable about menopause*. For women who have already sought out medical care for menopause issues, 60 percent report not finding their doctor’s advice helpful**.
These statistics are unacceptable, especially considering that an estimated 1 million women go through menopause every year. Yet research on women’s health issues of all kinds is underfunded, particularly when it comes to menopause—even though this key life transition affects the health and well-being of every person with a uterus.
“Misdiagnosis is far too common, and while the conversation on menopause is getting louder everyday, the care of our vaginas is still woefully underfunded,” says Catherine Balsam-Schwaber, CEO & Founder of Kindra.
Even the information we do have about menopause and its symptoms doesn’t always get translated into medical practices. Doctors, even gynecologists and family medicine physicians, often have critical knowledge gaps about treating patients going through menopause. Research shows that only 7 percent of family medicine, internal medicine, and gynecology residents in the U.S feel prepared to treat women going through menopause.
Finding a provider who actually understands menopause — including the latest science —is key to ensuring that your concerns are heard, and that symptoms are properly treated. But clearly, finding someone who is in-the-know about this transition is a tall order, even in 2023. That’s why Kindra and other menopause care leaders are stepping up to fill in the gaps and ensure that people going through menopause get the care they need and deserve.
Starting today, we’re teaming up with other leading women's healthcare brands to create a more holistic menopause treatment experience for consumers. Our partners are: Gennev, a telemedicine company that provides virtual menopause care from board-certified OB/GYNs and Origin, a pelvic floor physical therapy practice that offers in-person and virtual treatments. The goal: to give you all more (and better!) options for your menopause care.
If you’re among the 36 percent of women who are concerned about being dismissed or misled about menopause by their healthcare provider*—and are determined to find better care—here are some tips to help you get the help you need.
1. Understand your symptoms and needs
The menopause transition (and all the symptoms that come with it) can be overwhelming and hard to navigate. If you’re looking for some guidance, start by taking the Kindra Quiz. Our assessment asks you about all of the many different kinds of symptoms of menopause (including changes in periods, moods, and more) to help you pinpoint where you are in your journey and recommend tools and treatments that are right for you. It’s a great way to understand what you need right now so you can take the appropriate next steps. Plus, you’ll be armed with important information about your symptoms to make your doctor’s visit smoother and more efficient.
2. Look for the right credentials
Since menopause isn’t often covered adequately in regular residency programs, you’ll want to find a doctor who has gotten additional training specifically in menopause care. Look for someone who has an NCMP credential, or who is an NAMS Certified Menopause Practitioner, which means they’re gotten additional training from the North American Menopause Society. Search their directory to find a NCMP near you.
3. Try telemedicine
Our partners at Gennev offer virtual visits with board-certified OB/GYNs to provide menopause healthcare no matter where you live in the U.S. And they’re in-network with Aetna, so all visits, meds, and labs will be covered by your insurance. Here’s how to book an appointment.
4. Check out menopause departments at university hospitals
While not every healthcare center has a menopause-focused team (even though they should!), some top-rate teaching hospitals now have departments that specialize in menopause. Examples include the Menopause and Midlife Clinic at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, MA; the Center for Midlife Health and Menopause at NYU Langone in New York City; the Menopause Health program at UC San Diego in San Diego, CA.
*Source: Harris Poll for Kindra (July 2023)
**Source: Kindra Community Poll (July 2023)