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J Korean Acad Nurs. 2000 Aug;30(4):956-966. Korean. Comparative Study.
Chung ES .
Professor Department of Nursing, College of medicine, P.N.U., Korea.

The purpose of this study was to examine the comparative between depression and stress related to life events among women in the menopausal stage. Menopausal stages were divided into two groups: Pre and post- menopausal stages. The degree of depression and stress related to life events between pre and post menopausal women were compared to each other. Women, aged between 41 and 59 years, answered self-reported questionnaires which included Zung's depression scale and life events scale modified by Lee (1984). Findings were as follows; 1) The mean score of premenopausal women who experienced depression was 39.66, and for post-menopausal women the score was 41.45. There was no significant differences in depression levels between pre and post menopausal group.s (t=-1.55, p=.122). 2) Menopausal women experienced low levels of stress related to life events. There were no significant differences between pre and post menopausal groups(t=.527, p>.05). Both pre and post menopausal groups were highly concerned about education issues of their children and disharmony between couples. 3) There was a significant relationship between depression and stress related to life events among post-menopausal groups (r=.22, p<.01). Based on the findings of this study, the menopausal depression was associated with stress related to life events, especially among post-menopausal women. Feelings of lost fertility and feminine attributies result in menopausal depression, which is significantly correlated with women's negative perception of their life events. Therefore, nursing intervention needs to develop to help reduce the levels of depression and overcome their negative perception of the menopausal experience. Nurses should develop nursing strategies to help menopausal women to have positive perceptions and enhance quality of life by assisting their adaptability to physiological and psychological changes related to menopause.

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