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Some non-hormonal therapies can help ease classic menopause symptoms, study finds


(Photo: MGN)
 

A new study, done for the National Institutes of Health, shows that some non-hormonal therapies can help women dealing with classic menopause symptoms.

"I think the good thing that came from our study is that there are options for women who are unable to take hormones,” said Dr. Susan Reed, research director for the UW Medicine Women's Reproductive Health Research Center and lead author of the study.

The researchers looked at 10 years of data from five randomized trials. They found that low doses of serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), medications traditionally used to treat depression, can reduce hot flashes and night sweats.

Other findings: While exercise and yoga can improve the quality of your life, they did not help with the frequency or severity of hot flashes. Neither did Omega 3 fatty acid supplements.

Cognitive behavioral therapy using phone calls was found to be very effective at improving sleep.

"A telephone-based intervention was as good, if not better than the estrogen,” Dr. Reed said.