Vancouver’s First Medical Clinic for Women’s Midlife Health Opens Doors

Clinic offers walk-in resource centre for women, individualized risk assessments

(Vancouver, BC) – A new medical clinic has opened in Vancouver providing focused care for women beginning perimenopause and entering their midlife years.  The Westcoast Women’s Clinic for Midlife Health is the first and only clinic in Vancouver to be fully dedicated to the management of midlife health for women.

Founded by two Vancouver doctors, the Westcoast Women’s Clinic for Midlife Health offers:

  • Individualized risk assessment for osteoporosis, cardiovascular disease, breast disease, diabetes and depression to identify high risk individuals;
  • Management of midlife health concerns, including perimenopause and menopause symptoms;
  • Education for women regarding prevention of disease and maintenance of health; and,
  • An integrated team of female health professionals including physicians, a nurse educator, a nutritionist, a counsellor, an exercise specialist, a physiotherapist and a medical herbalist.

“Women have a window of opportunity in their midlife years to take control of their health and make informed, lifestyle and medical changes,” explained Dr. Bal Pawa, co-founder of the Westcoast Women’s clinic.  “By making changes in midlife, women can enhance their quality of life in later years and reduce the risk of certain conditions and diseases such as osteoporosis, diabetes, depression, obesity and cardiovascular disease.”

“Given today’s longer life expectancies, Canadian women will spend more than one third of their life after menopause,” said Dr. Nishi Dhawan, co-founder of the clinic.  “Our goal is to provide women with the information and the therapeutic options they need within a medical, educational and integrated health environment.”

The clinic has also established the Westcoast Women’s Information Centre which provides a library of current educational materials, resources, CD Roms, and guides about women’s health.  This information centre is a free, drop-in community resource, and includes Internet access to women’s health-related websites.

A women’s midlife years can span anywhere from late 30’s to mid 60’s.  In fact, although the signs of aging may not manifest themselves until years later, the biological aging process actually begins at age 35 for most women.

The Westcoast Women’s Clinic for Midlife Health focuses on women in their midlife transition years, and specifically women who wish to explore health options in an integrated health environment.  These include:

  • Women with symptoms of perimenopause and menopause such as hot flashes, mood swings, menstrual irregularities, decreased libido, and urinary incontinence etc.
  • Women who would like to explore their individual risk profile with respect to hormone-replacement therapy and other management options;
  • Women who are at increased risk of developing certain diseases – such as osteoporosis, heart disease, diabetes, depression, breast cancer — due family history, lifestyle or other factors.

Although the average age for the onset of menopause is 51 years, perimenopause – the transition period from a woman’s reproductive years to menopause – can start from the mid 30’s to the mid 40’s.  Symptoms of perimenopause can include:  irregular periods, changes in menstrual flow, hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, change in sexual desire, fatigue and sleep disturbances, mood changes, skin aging, muscle and joint changes and bladder problems.

An initial visit at the Westcoast Women’s Clinic includes an individualized risk assessment, a consultation with a female physician to review the patient’s concerns and develop a treatment plan.  Following the initial consultation, recommendations for treatment will also be forwarded to the patient’s family doctor to ensure continuity of care.

Dr. Nishi Dhawan  and Dr. Bal Pawa have 23 years combined experience as family doctors.  Recognizing the medical need for midlife women in the Vancouver area, they pursued special education and certification in midlife medicine prior to co-founding Westcoast Women’s Clinic for Midlife Health.

For more information about the clinic and arranging an appointment, women may contact us.