Impact of Menopausal Symptoms on Work: Findings from Women in the Health and Employment after Fifty (HEAF) Study

Stefania D’Angelo, Gregorio Bevilacqua, Julia Hammond, Elena Zaballa, Elaine M. Dennison, Karen Walker-Bone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Women make up a growing proportion of the workforce and therefore many women experience menopause while in paid employment. We explored the prevalence of menopausal symptoms, the relationship between symptoms and coping with work and the risk factors associated with struggling at work during the menopause. The Health and Employment After Fifty (HEAF) community-based cohort of people aged 50–64 years was incepted 2013–2014 to study health and work. In 2019, female participants were asked to complete a questionnaire about their menopausal symptoms, and effect of those symptoms on their ability to cope at work. 409 women were eligible for inclusion. The commonest symptoms were vasomotor (91.7%); trouble sleeping (68.2%); psychological (63.6%) and urinary (49.1%). The prevalence of reporting symptoms was similar no matter which type of occupation women were performing at the time. Around one-third of women reported moderate/severe difficulties coping at work because of menopausal symptoms. Risk factors for difficulties coping at work included: financial deprivation, poorer self-rated health, depression, and adverse psychosocial occupational factors but not physical demands. More awareness is needed amongst employers in all sectors but women with financial difficulties and those with jobs in which they feel insecure, unappreciated, or dissatisfied are at greatest risk.

Original languageEnglish
Article number295
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2023


  • menopause
  • physically demanding work
  • psychosocial work environment
  • working women

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