A Cross-Cultural Comparison of Climacteric Symptoms, Self-Esteem, and Quality of Life between Mosuo Women and Han Chinese Women


Background: The present study was designed to compare climacteric symptoms, self-esteem, and quality of life (QOL) between women from two different cultures in China (Mosuo and Han Chinese) and to evaluate the interaction among these variables. Mosuo is a small ethnic group in southwest China, which is described as a matriarchal society, while Han Chinese is the largest ethnic group with a patriarchal system.

Methods: This cross-cultural study was conducted on 54 Mosuo women and 52 Han Chinese women between 40 and 60 years of age. The subjects were selected through convenience sampling. They answered a sociodemographic questionnaire, the Menopause Rating Scale (MRS), the Self-Esteem Scale (SES), and the 12-Item Short Form Health Survey (SF-12).

Results: In our sample, Mosuo women obtained lower scores on the psychological and somato-vegetative subscales of the MRS, but higher scores on SES and the mental health-related QOL (SF-12/MCS) than Han Chinese women. However, the correlation between climacteric symptoms, self-esteem, and QOL was weaker in the Mosuo group compared to the Han group. Multiple linear regressions indicated that climacteric symptoms have negatively affected women's QOL.

Conclusion: In accordance with the study hypothesis, Mosuo women showed milder symptoms, a higher self-esteem, and a better QOL compared to the Han Chinese women during the climacteric. The interaction between climacteric symptoms, psychosocial variables, and QOL revealed cultural differences.


  • Climacteric symptoms
  • Self-esteem
  • Quality of life
  • Cross-cultural study
  • Mosuo


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