Menopause is yet another medical condition that you might say exhibits racial disparity. It affects African American women worse than it does white women in many different ways.
Menopause refers to the change that takes place in a woman's life when her menstrual cycles or periods stop and women are no longer able to get pregnant. This change normally occurs in women between the ages of 45 - 55. But it affects African American women differently than white women, according to a study published in the Journal of the North American Menopause Society.
How black women differ from white women with menopause
- Symptoms occur in 46 percent of black women, compared to only 30 percent of white women.
- More symptoms are experienced by black women, including hot flashes, dizziness, vaginal dryness and urine leakage.
- Symptoms increase with age in African American women, while white women report a decrease in menopausal symptoms as they age.
On the positive side, African American women are less likely than any other ethnic group to have somatic symptoms such as headaches, sleeping problems, increased heart rate, and stiffness and soreness in the joints.
For more information on Black women and menopause, visit www.blackwomenshealthproject.org/aamenopause.htm