Women experiencing hot flushes, night sweats, depression and sleep problems could be offered therapy to help reduce their menopause symptoms, under new guidelines.
But menopause champions warned that those suffering with symptoms could have long waits for mental health support and stressed that the new draft guidance to GPs from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) must not distract from “ongoing challenges” of getting HRT.
A NICE evidence review found that cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) can help make night-time sweats less severe and frequent and should be considered “alongside or as an alternative to HRT”.
The guidance is not mandatory but GPs will be expected to take the new guidance “fully into account”, said Nice.
Caroline Nokes, chair of the Commons’ women and equalities committee, welcomed the new guidance saying there was no “one size fits all” to help women going through the menopause, but said it must not be used to fob off women, some of whom were still facing drug shortages.
A major HRT drug shortage last year resulted in 22 restrictions being put in place, pushing some women to turn to the hidden market or meet up with other women to buy, swap or share medicines.
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Source: The Guardian, 17 November 2023