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Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Graduate Nursing

First Advisor

Dianna Sorenson


menopause, health and hygiene of nuns, nun psychology


This study was designed to explore the perimenopausal phenomenon in Catholic nuns. A general interview guide was used to obtain the postmenopausal reflections of the perimenopausal experience. The study revealed that except for a few individual variations, the perimenopausal symptoms of Catholic nuns are similar to those reported by women in other studies. The significance of these symptoms and the perimenopausal experience were expressed in terms of the life cycle and the cessation of menstruation. The Catholic nuns' cultural values and beliefs and technological, religious/ philosophical, kinship/social, political/legal, educational, and economic factors were perceived to influence their perimenopausal perceptions, experiences, and health care. They perceived that they did not have concerns related to sexual activity, childbearing, childrearing, and a spouse's response. They also perceived that they had better access to health care and information related to perimenopause. Perimenopausal perceptions and experiences may vary across cultures, but also among subgroups and individuals within a culture.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Nuns -- Health and hygiene
Nuns -- Psychology



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


Copyright © 1994 Debra Kolecka. All rights reserved