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Keywords:

  • menopause;
  • midlife;
  • nursing;
  • physical activity;
  • symptom;
  • women

Abstract

Aims

To explore the effect of diverse types of women's physical activity on menopausal symptoms among multiethnic groups of midlife women in the USA.

Background

Although physical activity is one of the most widely used non-pharmacological methods for managing menopausal symptoms, there is a paucity of clinical guidelines for women and healthcare providers because the relationship between physical activity and menopausal symptoms has been found inconsistent in previous studies.

Design

A secondary analysis of the data from a lager Internet survey study conducted in 2008–2010.

Methods

A total of 481 midlife women among four ethnic groups were selected from the original study. The data were collected using the Kaiser Physical Activity Survey and the Midlife Women's Symptom Index. Bivariate correlation analyses and hierarchical multiple regression analyses were used to analyse the data.

Results/Findings

The household/caregiving activity index was positively associated with the prevalence scores of the psychological symptoms in both non-Hispanic Asians and non-Hispanic African Americans. The increased sports/exercise activity index was negatively associated with the severity scores of the physical symptoms in both Hispanics and non-Hispanic Whites. The occupational activity index and the active living activity index significantly predicted the severity scores of the psychosomatic symptoms in Hispanics and non-Hispanic African Americans, respectively.

Conclusion

Nurses who take care of multiethnic groups of midlife women who experience menopausal symptoms should be aware of diverse types of women's physical activities within the cultural context.