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Table 3 Comparison between the two studies on menopause in Indigenous Australians

From: Menopause and the influence of culture: another gap for Indigenous Australian women?

First Author and Date Davies SR et al.Published in 2003 Research undertaken in 1999 McKenna, Elizabeth M Thesis submitted in 2001 Research undertaken in 2000
Title Climacteric symptoms among indigenous Australian women and a model for the use of culturally relevant art in health promotion [37] The Experience, Knowledge and Relevance of Menopause to Indigenous and Caucasian women in Far North Queensland [36]
Study Design Cross-sectional design, using structured interviews Face-to-Face interviewing: using both closed and open questioning technique.
   Mixed methods of analysis
Sampling and Sample Size Convenience sampling in the community setting Population based sample of women over 40 years.
  55 Participants Snowball sampling of rural Indigenous women. Word of mouth sampling recruitment of urban Indigenous women
   Random sampling using electoral database for urban Caucasian women.
   313 Participants
   - 130 rural Indigenous women
   - 73 Indigenous women in Cairns (urban)
   - 120 Caucasian women in Cairns (urban)
Location Kimberley region of Western Australia and south western Victoria - Australia Far North Queensland - Australia
Objective of Study “To evaluate climacteric symptoms among rural and remote Indigenous Australian women and to develop culturally relevant women’s health midlife educational material [37] To investigate the knowledge and experience of menopause in Far North Queensland Indigenous women, with comparison to a Caucasian population in the same area
Age of Menopause Not reported Rural Indigenous: 45.9 years
   Urban Indigenous: 46.9 years
   Urban Caucasian: 48.3 years
Symptoms Described 1. Hot flushes (59%) Lower rates of symptom reporting in the rural Indigenous women compared to the other populations in this study
  2. Urinary frequency/incontinence (53%)  
  3. Mood swings (47%)  
  4. Vaginal dryness (41%) 1. Hot flushes/night sweats
   - Rural Indigenous 36%
   - Urban Indigenous 71.9%
   - Urban Caucasian 68%
   2. Vaginal dryness
   - Rural Indigenous 29.1%
   - Urban Indigenous 56.3%
   - Urban Caucasian 46%
   3. Mood changes
   - Rural Indigenous 37.2%
   - Urban Indigenous 65.6%
   - Urban Caucasian 42%
   4. Insomnia
   - Rural Indigenous 16.3%
   - Urban Indigenous 43.8%
   - Urban Caucasian 34%
Key Themes Lack of understanding about the cause of their symptoms In rural Indigenous women, 58.9% were not aware that menses would cease.
  No traditional methods used to deal with bothersome symptoms Celibacy at menopause was suggested by 81.5% of Indigenous women interviewed
  No use of hormone replacement therapy Rural Indigenous women were less likely to access medical care, and to talk about menopause
   Main source of information – health professionals for Indigenous women and media for Caucasian women