In the U.S., over 31 million women between the ages of 40 and 55 will or have recently experienced menopause. This transition profoundly impacts a woman's health and quality of life, yet the needs of this vast population have been largely ignored. Fed up with the status quo, this bold generation of women is demanding better care— and unearthing an untapped healthcare market.
There is a massive need to disrupt healthcare for menopausal women. Menopause technically marks a single day twelve months following a woman's last period. But menopausal symptoms last, on average, seven and a half years. Some women may even have symptoms that last for more than a decade and as of 2023, its need is not being met appropriately for women.
Each woman's experience of menopause is unique. While some will hardly notice any changes except for the absence of their period, many others will endure symptoms that make them feel like their body has gone completely haywire.
Hot flashes and brain fog are two of the more well-known symptoms women will experience during peri- and post-menopause. They are frequently normalized and seen as something to be endured. However, these symptoms and others — including insomnia, incontinence, vulvovaginal atrophy, and more — can turn a woman's life upside-down. Menopausal symptoms can be so intense and disruptive that they can lead to severe mental health issues. They may even prompt life-altering decisions like early retirement or divorce.
To top it all off, menopause occurs when a woman is in her prime and at the peak of her career. Women in this phase of life make 80% of the healthcare buying and usage decisions, yet 73% don't seek treatment for their menopause symptoms because they don't know where to look. Women over 50 currently hold more than $15 trillion in purchasing power and are actively looking for innovative, customized solutions to improve their quality of life. Projections indicate that the menopause market will reach $24.4 billion by 2030.
The State of Menopause Care: Critical Gaps and Missed Opportunities
The health concerns of women outside of reproductive activities have traditionally been overlooked by the medical and scientific communities. Just 20% of OB/GYN residency programs offer any form of menopause training. Those that do often only provide elective courses. Over 80% of medical residents report feeling "barely comfortable" managing menopause.
In today's healthcare landscape, a woman, on average, spends $2000 annually on menopause care. They also spend up to $20,000 on trial-and-error prescriptions and doctor visits. But, the unfortunate reality is that many women won't ever find a treatment plan that meets their needs.
There are three major gaps in our current, one-size-fits-all approach to care. First, are the limited and brief visits with providers who lack knowledge about menopause. Second, the underutilization of advanced diagnostic testing to create customized treatment plans. Lastly, the lack of understanding and emphasis on treatments that improve longevity. Misunderstanding of the risks of hormone replacement therapy (HRT) hinders many from accessing a crucial treatment known to enhance a woman's quality of life and longevity.
In the absence of proper treatment, we've seen a surge of products and services created to mitigate women's menopausal symptoms. These interventions may offer temporary relief, but they fail to treat the root cause: the fluctuation and decrease in estrogen.
Women over 40 — empowered by vocal celebrities and influential female leaders openly discussing their menopause experiences — are increasingly aware of these care deficiencies and actively seeking better treatment. In response, Femtech startups are rising to the challenge, offering personalized care and innovative solutions. However, of the 8% of Femtech startups that focus on menopause, less than 1% target longevity.
The Link Between Menopause and Longevity
Menopause is not merely a hormonal transition; it's a significant turning point that can shape a woman's health and quality of life for years to come. How we respond at this critical juncture affects the length and quality of her health in older age.
But how are menopause and longevity linked? The ovary is the central command of a woman's endocrine system. Ovaries produce the vital hormones estrogen and progesterone, which activate hormone receptors everywhere, from the brain to our joints. They also age at twice the rate of any other organ in a woman's body.
During peri-menopause, women's hormones fluctuate and decline. This causes the many, and varied, symptoms of menopause. In the years following menopause, a woman's body will regain balance, adapting to the lower levels of hormones.
However, the impact of menopause on her longevity is irreversible.
The timing of a woman's menopause is critical in determining her lifespan. The loss of hormones during menopause accelerates cellular aging by 6%. Earlier menopause tends to correlate with a shorter life, while later menopause can increase the likelihood of living to age 90. Menopause also sets off a cascade of adverse health effects, such as an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, diabetes, stroke, and dementia. The resulting picture is that women may live longer but often do so in compromised health.
Understanding the link between menopause and longevity, it becomes clear that this phase of life demands more than mere symptom management; it calls for a comprehensive and innovative approach to care.
FemGevity: A Comprehensive Solution
FemGevity Health is a FemTech digital health startup revolutionizing the future of menopause treatment and feminine longevity care. Our unique platform empowers women to live longer, healthier lives by optimizing their health during this critical phase.
At FemGevity, we don't just address the symptoms of menopause; we take a proactive approach to women's health that promotes and protects longevity. Our comprehensive model of care combines telemedicine services with accredited medical professionals and menopause experts, precision diagnostics, and in-depth symptom analysis to craft an effective treatment plan for each woman. This individualized approach reimagines the outdated one-size-fits-all healthcare model to deliver targeted and personalized care.
Unlike other menopause digital health companies, our distinctive approach focuses on improving long-term health from day one. We begin treating our patients during their perimenopausal years, helping them reach their optimal hormone levels to improve their symptoms and prevent disease. As such, we position ourselves as long-term partners, providing targeted care through menopause and beyond.
Over the next three years, we aim to expand our presence to 14 states generating $34.9M in revenue. We are seeking $3M in seed funding to facilitate these ambitious plans to propel our national expansion, launch our online store, and roll out our employer program.
Empowered Aging: A Vision for Menopause and Beyond
The landscape of menopause care in the U.S. has a long road ahead. Despite the unique and complex challenges this phase of life presents, the traditional healthcare system continues to underserve and overlook the specific needs of women during menopause and beyond.
FemGevity Health offers a comprehensive and forward-thinking approach to menopause that responds to the needs of women over 40 and generations to come. By focusing on individualized treatment plans, leveraging cutting-edge technology, and emphasizing longevity medicine, FemGevity is setting a new standard for care.