Penny Lancaster recalls experience with menopause
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Loose Women’s Penny Lancaster spoke with Dan Walker on Tuesday as she reflected on the debilitating menopause symptoms she suffered before finally being correctly diagnosed. Penny praised her husband Rod Stewart for being an “arm of support” as she pointed out how her health battle impacted her family.
Penny began: “Initially when I first had my symptoms, it was during the beginning of lockdown and I thought I was experiencing Covid symptoms.
“Mostly it was the hot flushes, which I thought was the temperature of Covid. And, you know, I kept making excuses for my buildup of anxiety to the fact that I was homeschooling.
“But I got to a point though, where I really couldn’t cope anymore and there was no brushing it under the carpet.
“And I was I was just in floods of tears all the time, unconsolable and that sort of anxiety grew to fear and then I was afraid of that fear.”
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“It just spiralled,” she continued. “I finally, spoke with a GP who put me on antidepressants, thought that that was what I was going through.
“Didn’t sort of take into consideration my age and some of the other side effects.
“Maybe [they] hadn’t had that particular menopause education through the medical procedure to become a GP, which is obviously one of the most really important things that needs to be addressed because so many women are misdiagnosed.
“But as soon as I got to talk to more women and share my story, other women that were a little older and then maybe had been given the help of HRT recognised my symptoms.”
Penny explained she was able to come off the antidepressants and began taking HRT.
Reflecting on the positive impact of the medication, Penny admitted she felt she was back to her old self.
“It was like I had reversed going back in time to the Penny that I was and I even started a new career as well which sadly, so many women are having to give up their careers because of the stress and anxiety.”
Host Dan praised Penny for being honest about her experience with menopause.
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“You can see that relief come over your face when you talk about finding out what was going on and then the medication to help you with that,” he said.
Dan later asked Penny how her husband Rod helped her through this difficult time.
She replied: “It crept up on me just as much as it did to [my family].
“It was a learning curve for everyone but I had luckily had the support of my husband, who was very understanding and I’m quite good at wearing my heart on my sleeve and discussing all sorts of topics.”
Penny explained the dramatic change HRT had on her life as she recalled being a “crumpled mess of tears on the floor”.
She praised her family for being “arms of support” around her.
“He’s a great advocate for men to watch out for those symptoms and look on the internet.
“There are so many resources out there now and books and to get your loved one to the GP.”
Dan Walker presents Channel 5 News at 5pm on weekdays.
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