Women’s hormone health has been under the spotlight in 2019, mainly for good reasons. Through strong women’s advocacy menopause is no longer a taboo subject and is regularly discussed in the newspapers, on TV and radio and through social media.

Although most of the information has been positive, there is still the occasional alert about the safety of HRT. When these concerns arise, it is vital that any potential risks are put in context of the many benefits of HRT so that women can be empowered to make fully informed balanced decisions about their menopause health. It should also alert the academic community that prospective research needs to continue unabated into modern types of HRT e.g. bioidentical estrogen and progesterone, new types of estrogen and alternatives to HRT that maximise benefits and minimise risks.

Our Director, Nick Panay took part in Richmond Runfest’s 10k course in September, all in aid of Cancer Research.

Hormone Health continues to invest funds into novel research and into the educational work of the British Menopause Society BMS and National Association for Premenstrual Syndromes NAPS. Earlier this year I participated in a sponsored 10K park run in Kew Gardens with NAPS trustees and a sufferer to increase awareness of the impact of severe PMS/PMDD and to raise funds for NAPS.

We now have nine Hormone Health Associates working at 92 Harley Street including a dietician and two working in our new regional centre at Nurture in Nottingham. We continue to train specialists in both the NHS and private sectors as well as engaging actively in National and International education through professional conferences and social media.

The ethos of Hormone Health is that care of our women is underpinned by adherence to British and International Menopause Society Evidence Based Guidelines and use of regulated hormonal and non-hormonal products wherever possible. All our associates have undergone recognised training programmes and have further qualifications with extensive experience in menopause and other aspects of hormonal management.

The theme of this year has been “Education”. My colleagues and I ran International Menopause Society training courses (IMPART) in San Jose, Costa Rica; Kolkata, India and St Petersburg, Russia. We also launched a global position statement on testosterone to coincide with World Menopause day. The key recommendations were presented at conferences in the USA, Austria, London and Paris with the main messages that Testosterone is an important female hormone which many women with low libido benefit from using. As always, further research into long term effectiveness/safety and development of more testosterone products with a female indication would be desirable.

Looking forward to 2020, Hormone Health will continue to grow its regional as well as central services through collaboration with its sister organisation The Fertility Partnership and facilitated by the excellent team at Designated Medical. The IMPART menopause educational programme will continue to put menopause on the map globally and new research projects are planned. The theme for next year’s World Menopause Day will be Premature Ovarian Insufficiency POI (Premature Menopause), which is another neglected distressing condition requiring greater attention from both the educational and research perspectives. We will be linking in and supporting the excellent work of the POI women’s advocacy group Daisy Network, of which I am a proud Patron.

Very best wishes for the festive season and for a Healthy and Happy New Year!

Nick Panay