Scholar Info

Janet Carpenter

Distinguished Prof, Assoc Dean for Research

Department of Science of Nursing Care


Management of menopausal symptoms

I have been a leader in conducting interdisciplinary clinical trials to create a base of evidence to help women and their care providers select the best treatments for managing menopausal symptoms. I have been PI of 3 large NIH grants and contributed to other large grants that have dispelled myths about what therapies are effective. I was the only nurse to lead a clinical site in the NIH-funded, interdisciplinary network called MsFLASH. The body of evidence I and my teams have generated has been incorporated into Cochrane reviews, meta-analysis, and most recently the 2015 North American Menopause Society position statement on the non-hormonal management of menopausal symptoms. I was the invited chair of the interdisciplinary expert panel that developed the position statement. I have also become an authority on measurement methodologies. A scale I developed has been widely adopted for use in the field . The scale has been (1) cited in 145 peer-reviewed scientific publications and additional book chapters; (2) translated into twelve languages (Afrikaans, Danish, Farsi, Flemish, French, Italian, Mandarin, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish, Taiwanese); and (3) recommended as an outcome measure for use in treatment trials by the National Cancer Institute’s Physician Data Query (PDQ®) Cancer Information Summaries for Supportive and Palliative Care (Coping with Cancer) Sweats and Hot Flashes. In addition, I was the first nurse to develop, test, and refine physiological monitoring systems to measure hot flashes. I have personally or virtually trained individuals in seven countries (USA, Canada, Australia, Switzerland, Denmark, France, and United Kingdom) to use these systems. In partnership with two different manufacturing companies, I directed efforts to decrease the size and vastly improve (e.g., greater data storage capability, more refined analytic software, and simplified data output) these measurement systems. I have been a pioneer in documenting how such measures can be used to better understand women’s experiences of hot flashes, and how different hot flash treatments affect women. My leadership in this area is recognized by: (1) the frequent citations (combined 392 times) of my publications related to physiological measures; (2) invited presentations at venues hosted by the National Institutes of Health; and (3) substantive contributions as a member of teams leading the nation in issuing hot flash measurement guidelines in 2005 and 2012. Given that women make up 50% of the world’s population, my research is critically important to addressing population health through evidence-based clinical practice and preventing breast cancer through non-hormonal menopause symptom management options. Without my contributions to research, there would be substantially less evidence in existence today to address women’s menopausal health needs.