Society for Endocrinology - a world-leading authority on hormones

Endocrinologist 151 Cover
Issue 151 Spring 2024

Endocrinologist > Spring 2024 > Society News



What an exciting time it is to be working in the field of women’s hormone health. I am sure that those of you who, like myself, have been in this field for decades will agree that it’s a breath of fresh air to see the sky-rocketing interest

In recent years, a rapid upsurge in attention has been seen across the board: not just from health professionals throughout the NHS, but from the public, the media, and many significant employing organisations. News stories about menopause have risen exponentially, with the so-called ‘Davina effect’ leading to more GP consultations about hormone concerns, and many more women seeking menopause treatment, to the point of HRT shortages.

Attention around other women’s hormone health conditions, such as premenstrual disorders and polycystic ovary syndrome, is also evident, and apps and commercial products related to women’s health are appearing everywhere. Many GPs, other medical specialists and allied health professionals want to know more about women’s health and menopause. And they are increasingly turning to endocrinologists for insight, support, advice and guidance.

With this rise in focus, it’s our duty as health professionals and leaders in this field to disseminate up-to-date, high quality, peer-reviewed information far and wide, and to dispel myths. And that was the aim of the first Society for Endocrinology Women’s Health Summit on 2 February 2024.


The Society for Endocrinology has witnessed the current climate, and recognised an unmet need for education in endocrine aspects of women’s health for its members and many other health professionals. While other Society meetings touch on women’s health topics, the rising interest meant that a stand-alone event was increasingly needed. Informal conversations gathered momentum, and a short meeting with the Society’s trading subsidiary, Bioscientifica, led to a cascade of activity, with the formation of the founding group.

At the early meetings, I realised that something exciting and meaningful was developing. A brilliant founding group, including endocrinologists from across the UK, shared insightful ideas about format, content, suitable locations and speakers. We had lively discussions to shortlist the final format. Teamwork personified. And just like that, we created the Society’s first Women’s Health Summit event.

Excitingly, all our first-choice speakers agreed to attend. The programme included a superb combination of highly relevant topics, world-class speakers, and a convenient location for most.

Unsurprisingly, interest in the meeting was enthusiastic from the outset. Registration outperformed expectations, with 125 registered for the first meeting. And, for an event on a Friday afternoon in Birmingham, with rail strikes a constant threat, this was a great success even before we started.


All speakers at the event were world-class experts in their fields. We felt very privileged to have two huge hitters who did not disappoint!

Wiebke Arlt should need no introduction to readers of The Endocrinologist. Wiebke is a prolific leader in endocrine science and is currently Director of the MRC London Institute of Medical Sciences hosted at Imperial College London. She is so in demand that we could hardly believe we managed to pull off getting her onto the programme. We have Mick O’Reilly to thank for that!

Nick Panay is arguably the most renowned expert in reproductive medicine in the world: past Chair of the British Menopause Society, Current President of the International Menopause Society, Council Member of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists and past President of the Obstetrics and Gynaecology Section of the Royal Society of Medicine. His research portfolio is also prolific. Nick and I are passionate about collaboration between allied specialties and related organisations, to improve women’s health education for doctors and the public, and to further women’s health research.

During the sponsored satellite symposium, Alex Comninos shared his personal experience of the newly licensed medication, fezolinetant. Alex described its discovery as a treatment for menopause vasomotor symptoms as a serendipitous occurrence, while he was undertaking research at Imperial College London with Waljit Dhillo. This context behind a newly licensed, first-in-class, potentially game-changing medication for use in women’s health was a timely and captivating story to share at this meeting.

There was plenty of time for interactive questions during each session and networking during breaks. Very importantly for the organisers, the meeting ran to time like clockwork!


As soon as delegates began arriving, there was a ‘buzz’, with everyone saying how relevant the programme appeared and how it was just the missing link in continuing professional development that we all need for clinical practice. The venue was also excellent.

As the day progressed, many people rightly commented on the exceptional quality of the presentations, topics covered, and educational value. Virtually no one left early, even though it ran to late on a Friday afternoon. As Helena Gleeson, the last speaker of the day, stated – there was a remarkable attendance for the graveyard shift!

Everyone, including me, was buzzing and on a high as we all left after the meeting. We are definitely in the dawn of a new era, with a fresh focus on women’s hormone health across clinical medicine, and the Society for Endocrinology is front and centre.

Consultant Endocrinologist, Manchester, UK

Rupa Ahluwalia
Niamh Martin
Annice Mukherjee
Michael O’Reilly
Helen Turner

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