Westminster and Lambeth women experiencing menopausal symptoms and not currently receiving hormone replacement therapy (HRT) are being invited to take part in a new study evaluating the value of Chinese medicine as a treatment.

The study is funded by the Department of Health and being carried out at the University of Westminster by Chinese medicine expert Dr Volker Scheid.

The study will provide up to six months’ worth of free treatments, which will be based on one-to-one consultations. Treatment will usually involve a combination of acupuncture and herbs, but women will be able to choose either. Free dietary and lifestyle advice will also be on offer.

Dr Scheid said: “Many women are disappointed with the treatment offered by conventional medicine in the form of HRT, which has potential side effects. Chinese medicine offers one alternative.

“Chinese medicine is particularly interesting because menopausal experience has been shown to vary significantly with culture. This research aims to design effective Chinese medicine treatments for different menopausal symptom patterns.

“This study has received full ethical approval from the NHS and patient safety is paramount,” added Dr Scheid.

Following the treatments, Dr Scheid will undertake a conventional clinical trail to evaluate the results. If proven clinically to be successful, the treatments may eventually become available on the NHS.

To be eligible, women living within the Westminster and Lambeth Primary Care Trusts areas must:

  • be experiencing menopausal symptoms;
  • be between 45-55 years of age;
  • not currently be receiving HRT treatment.

Anyone interested in taking part in the study is asked to contact project administrator Michelle Aris on 020 7911 5000 ext 2737, or email M.Aris2@westminster.ac.uk.

Note: Women’s Health Concern is not connected to this study.