Living with Premature Menopause – The Happy Menopause Podcast
It’s World Menopause Day and this year’s theme is premature ovarian insufficiency (POI), otherwise known as premature menopause. It’s a condition which affects 1 in 100 women under 40, 1 in 1000 under 30, and 1 in 10,000 under 20. This is where the ovaries are unable to produce oestrogen and progesterone and the menopause happens many years before it naturally should. It can be incredibly stressful for the women concerned and requires specialist hormone treatment to negate the health risks of an oestrogen deficiency at such a young age. So I’ve reached out to Dr Rebecca Gibbs, who’s the perfect person to discuss this because of her professional specialism in obstetrics and gynaecology and her own personal experience of premature menopause.
Rebecca is a consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist working at the Royal Free Hospital in London and at The Portland Hospital. Rebecca was diagnosed with premature ovarian insufficiency in her early 30s whilst undergoing fertility treatment. She has used her experiences as both a doctor and a patient to volunteer for the Daisy Network, the UK’s premature ovarian insufficiency charity and she’s full of great, practical advice on how to cope with this difficult condition and to live a positively child-free life.
We have a frank conversation about the health implications of a diagnosis of premature menopause, the devastating reproductive impact it has on girls and women, the appropriate treatment and how her own experience has changed the way Rebecca approaches all her menopausal patients. Rebecca talks about the excellent support from her GP after her diagnosis, the counselling she received to help her and her husband come to terms with it and how she has created a full, happy and positive life for herself over the past 5 years. We cover the unwitting lack of sensitivity that is often shown towards women who don’t have children and Rebecca is funny and forthright about how she deals with the inevitable: “And when are you going to start a family?” question. We also discuss her work with Daisy Network as their Advice Doctor and all the wonderful support that this charity offer women with premature ovarian insufficiency.
Tune in to hear more from this sparky, interesting and highly inspirational woman!
Find out more about Rebecca and the work that she does at The Daisy Network.
Contact her directly firstname.lastname@example.org
For Daisy Network membership enquiries, please email: email@example.com
Follow Rebecca on Twitter
Useful Products & Resources
Check out this book that Rebecca found useful: Living the Life Unexpected: How to Find Hope, Meaning and a Fulfilling Future Without Children
This is the NICE guideline referenced by Rebecca which may give you some confidence when seeking advice from your GP.
Check out the Daisy Network blog for all manner of advice, from Handling A Pregnancy Announcement when you have POI to A Teenage Diagnosis.