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Menopause: Everything You Need to Know

Book Review:
Menopause: Everything You Need to Know

Nicole Jaff, PhD, NCMP
Johannesburg, South Africa: Bookstorm Ltd. & Pan Macmillan, 2011
366 pages

As asserted in the title, this book offers a comprehensive explanation of menopause and the challenges women may experience during this transition. There are in-depth discussions of varied topics, such as: hormonal changes during menopause, symptom management strategies, health concerns of midlife women, and even a section on understanding research and information found on the Internet. Overall, this book serves to give women a thorough understanding of what to expect and how to navigate this sometimes tumultuous journey.

Among the strengths of this book is the emphasis on women to take responsibility for their well-being during menopause and beyond. Each chapter concludes with suggestions about how women can empower themselves to foster good health and ensure the care they receive from their providers is individualized and up to date. In addition, the author goes to great lengths to dispel many myths and misperceptions about menopause, hormone therapy, and treatment alternatives. She encourages women to embrace, even honor, both menopause and aging in order to live authentically during what may be the best years of their lives.

One of the limitations of the book is the intensely detailed discussion of each topic. Both the breadth and depth of each explanation contribute to making this book feel very technical and dry, more like a course textbook than a book for the general public. Moreover, women seeking quick and simple answers to their questions may find the amount of material they have to read through to locate the needed information somewhat daunting.

Most readers should find this book valuable.

Review written by:
Mary Fischer, PhD, WHNP-BC, NCMP
Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates
Boston, MA

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