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A SERIES of ‘difficult conversations’ are set to take place at The University of Leicester, starting with the subject of menopause.

Experts on the impact of the menopause will join a public panel discussion at the university on Thursday, March 3, to bust myths and discuss the often taboo topic.

Picture: University of Leicester

Kate Muir, producer of Channel 4’s highly-commended documentary Davina McCall: Sex, Myths and The Menopause and author of new book Everything You Need to Know About the Menopause (but Were Too Afraid to Ask), will be joined by health workers, oral historians, and University experts for a fact-finding discussion as part of the Difficult Conversations series, celebrating 100 years of world-changing research at the University, in its Centenary year.

The free event, to be hosted at the University of Leicester Business School (ULSB)’s newly redeveloped Brookfield campus between 6-8pm, is set to explore the menopause and its effects, and how support networks can be put in place to provide inclusive care and policies.

Around 13 million women in the UK are either peri- or post-menopausal. Up to 60 per cent of women experience symptoms and only 38 per cent of women seek help from their GP.

Panellists for the discussion, followed by a public Q&A, include Samina Malek, Consultant Gynaecologist, and lead for menopause services at the Complex Menopause Clinic, University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, and Kate Muir, activist for The Menopause Charity and author of Everything You Need to Know About the Menopause (But Were Too Afraid to Ask).

“The time has come for feminism to catch up with science, and for science to catch up with feminism. We need to talk about the menopause,” she said.

“We need to make the menopause about metamorphosis, not misery. We need to tell our mad, moving menopause stories.”

Difficult Conversations is hosted by Gary Dixon, Pro-Chancellor and Chair of the University’s Council, and facilitated by Turi King, Professor of Public Engagement and Genetics, and co-presenter with Stacey Dooley of BBC Two’s DNA Family Secrets.

The series also seeks to challenge perceptions on certain topics, and encourage members of the public to consider ‘difficult’ questions which impact us all.

Professor King said: “What we wanted to do with this series is to talk about topics that are potentially quite difficult ones to talk about. That’s one of the big things about research: you explore areas that may be difficult, and having these conversations is a way of moving things forward and possibly change things for the better.

“Difficult Conversations also serves as an ideal forum to celebrate the University’s Centenary, by highlighting 100 years of world-changing ideas and research, right here in Leicester.”

While the event is free to attend, guests are encouraged to book their place through Eventbrite.