Take a sneaky peak into what happens at our menopause clinic. Our menopause consultations provide you with the help and support you need to thrive during perimenopause, menopause and beyond.
Learn how a menopause specialist can help reduce your menopause symptoms and support you as you go through this new, sometimes turbulent, stage of life.
What is a menopause clinic?
A menopause clinic provides holistic medical care provided by menopause specialists. At our menopause clinic, you can expect to receive comprehensive care and support for any physical, emotional and psychological symptoms related to any stage of perimenopause, menopause or post-menopause.
Because the reproductive hormones; estrogen, progesterone and testosterone affect all organ systems in the body, menopause symptoms vary between menopausal women, but can be diverse and include:
hot flashes and night sweats,
muscle and bone loss and weakness,
heavy menstrual periods
urinary frequency and increased urinary tract infections,
hair and skin changes,
vaginal dryness and
reduced sexual desire or libido.
Your menopause specialist offers personalized treatments that addresses the specific needs of each client. From hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and lifestyle interventions to psychological counselling and nutritional guidance, we have the tools and the expertise necessary to help women through the menopause transition.
What is the best doctor to see for menopause?
There are a number of different doctors and specialists who support women with menopause. Depending on your individual situation, symptoms and needs, you may choose to see a:
primary care doctor (GP),
endocrinologist (a hormone specialist),
gynecologist ( a specialist of the female reproductive system), or
Your choice of doctor will depend on a number of factors including their availability, your needs and preferences.
What is a menopause specialist?
A menopause specialist is a doctor who specializes supporting women through the life-stages of perimenopause, menopause and post-menopause. They diagnosis and treat menopause-related conditions.
Many menopause specialists consider a whole-woman approach to menopause. This means your menopause specialist will consider, not only your physical symptoms such as hot flushes and vaginal dryness, but also how menopause is impacting on your emotional and mental wellbeing.
They are knowledgeable about the hormonal changes occurring during perimenopause and menopause, and how they interact to create specific symptoms.
A menopause specialist understands the variety of menopausal treatments available from supplements, to hormone replacement therapy to non-hormone medications. They are also knowledgeable about lifestyle changes that can help reduce symptoms of menopause.
Menopause specialists often provide hormone replacement therapy and will provide counselling around the benefits and risks of the various treatment options. They also provide counselling, support, and resources to help women navigate the menopausal transition in the context of their relationships, families and workplaces.
Your menopause specialist will develop a treatment plan customized to your individual needs. With their guidance and support, you can experience a smoother transition through perimenopause, menopause and beyond.
Who are the clients at a menopause clinic?
At Ōtepoti Integrative Health menopause clinic we treat women over the age of 30 who are going through the menopause transition (perimenopause, menopause and postmenopause). We also see younger women who are experiencing premature or surgical menopause.
We care about every aspect on menopause health. Our doctor can help with:
Treating the symptoms of the perimenopause, menopause, and postmenopause
Treatment for menopause that is a result of surgery or cancer treatment
Premature menopause (premature ovarian insufficiency – POI)
Vaginal symptoms related to the menopause
Menopause sexual dysfunction
Mood changes such as depression and anxiety that are related to the hormonal fluctuations during the menopause transition.
Emotional support and stress management.
How do I get referred to a Menopause Clinic?
If you want to see a menopause specialist you can ask your GP to refer you. Some menopause specialists take self-referrals. At Ōtepoti Integrative Health menopause clinic we attempt to make accessing menopause care as easy as possible so you can book your own appointment online at a time that suits you.
We also offer telehealth appointments so that you can have an appointment no matter where you live in New Zealand.
What happens at a menopause clinic?
When you make your booking you will be sent a comprehensive questionnaire to complete prior to your appointment.
Your appointment will take place in person in our clinic in Dunedin or as a telehealth consult. We listen to your story and help you understand your symptoms and the solutions available. Our goal is to provide you with evidence-based information and advice and to support you to make choices that work best for you.
We work with you to create a personalised holistic menopause treatment plan to help you on your journey to feel more like yourself again. We take an evidence-based approach to menopause treatment, which is always focused on your individual needs and symptoms.
A consultation at a menopause clinic is the first step towards banishing hot flushes, relieving anxiety, or finding ways to take control of the symptoms you are experiencing.
At your first appointment you may be given a prescription for your menopausal hormone therapy or supplements depending on your preference as well as a plan for menopause lifestyle health habits.
What HRT is available in New Zealand?
There are a number of menopause hormone treatments including both synthetic and natural hormone therapy available in New Zealand and includes:
Combined estrogen/progestogen tablets,
Utrogestan (natural progesterone)
Mirena (as a progestogen component)
Read more about funded and unfunded HRT options in New Zealand here.
Do I need tests for perimenopause?
You do not need blood tests or urine tests to determine if you are in perimenopause but your menopause doctor may do blood tests to check your symptoms are not due to something else such as low or high thyroid hormones.
They may also test your iron and full blood count if your menstrual period has become heavier.
What happens at follow-up appointments at a menopause clinic?
At your follow-up appointment your menopause doctor will check your progress and can adjust your treatment and your menopause plan according to your ongoing needs.
If you are taking HRT you will need regular health checks to ensure optimal health and wellbeing and you are not experiencing adverse effects if your risks change.
How to make the most of your menopause clinic consult?
To make sure you get the best out of your menopause appointment, complete your intake questionnaire. It is also handy to have the following information:
Your blood pressure – you can check this with a calibrated home monitor, or visit your local pharmacy or GP practice. You will need to give a recent blood pressure reading before HRT can be prescribed (not needed if you attend the menopause clinic in person)
Your height and weight – so we can calculate your body mass index (BMI)
A list of any HRT treatments you have already tried
Your medical history: if you have a history of blood clots, heart disease, autoimmune disease or cancers (especially breast cancer, ovarian cancer or endometrial cancer) please bring specialist letters.
Your family history of medical problems – especially breast, ovarian or endometrial cancers, heart disease, strokes, blood clots, and osteoporosis
A full list of the medications you are currently taking.
Don't forget to bring your questions, we'd love to help fill in the gaps, there is so little menopause education, it can sometimes feel like menopause is stepping into a blackhole.
How long will your menopause clinic consult last?
Our initial menopause consultations take 50 minutes. Follow-up consultations will take 25 to 50 minutes. Ongoing blood tests are not required to monitor HRT unless you are using testosterone, where regular blood tests are essential.
We help lots of women every day, so we have to stick to appointment timings. If you have a lot to discuss we are happy for you to book a 50 minute follow-up.
Whether you are still having regular periods or have had your last period, we are here to help you with your menopause health and wellbeing. Get in touch.
FAQ about Menopause Clinics
What will a GP do for menopause?
Your GP can prescribe HRT, however they do not have the time in a 15 minute consultation to provide counselling and information about the benefits and risks of the various types of HRT and to provide you with a personalized lifestyle medicine plan.
Your GP can refer you to a menopause specialist if that is your preference.
How can I find a menopause clinic near me?
If you are based in New Zealand or Australia, check the Australasian Menopause Society website and you can find a menopause doctor near you.
Where can I get started?
Tracking your perimenopause or menopause symptom patterns is a great place to start. Contact your health provider or menopause specialist if you would love to know more or jump online and make an appointment with us!
As a menopause doctor, Dr Deb Brunt @ Ōtepoti Integrative Health would love to support you through the perimenopause and menopausal stages of life, supporting all aspects of your health and wellbeing.
Dr Deb Brunt is a menopause specialist in New Zealand and also provides menopause health coaching internationally to support the best health habits. She has a passion for supporting women adapt to their changing female physiology for optimum health so they are able to live their best lives.
Schedule a free health discovery call with her to learn more.