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PROF Lorraine Dennerstein


  • Menopause, women's sexual health, women's mental health



  • Professor Lorraine Dennerstein AO MBBS PhD DPM FRANZCP

    Professor Dennerstein holds a Personal Chair at The University of Melbourne, Australia, where she is Foundation Director of the Office for Gender and Health and Professor in the Department of Psychiatry. She established and directed the first academic centre for teaching and research in women’s health and also the first inpatient mother-baby psychiatric unit in an obstetrics hospital. Her contribution to women's health was recognised by the award of the Order of Australia in 1994. She has been a consultant to the Commonwealth Secretariat (London), the World Health Organisation, the Global Commission on Women's Health (WHO) and the International Bioethics Committee of UNESCO. For over 30 years she has researched the relationship of ovarian steroids to women’s sexual functioning. Studies included effects on women’s sexual functioning of: changes in endogenous hormones with menstrual cycle and menopause; hysterectomy and bilateral oophorectomy; oral contraceptive pill and hormone therapy. Her population based study of women through the menopausal transition has been able to document prospectively the relative importance of hormonal to psychosocial factors in women’s sexual functioning.
    Research experience includes surveys, bioavailability studies, double blind randomized clinical trials, evaluation of therapies, the development and validation of questionnaires for assessing female sexual functioning and epidemiological studies. Publications include 24 books authored/edited and over 300 journal articles/chapters (over 210 in peer reviewed journals). She has been president of national and international medical societies and organised national and international scientific conferences. She is a Past President of the International Society for the Study of Women’s Sexual Health and is currently Review Editor of the Journal of Sexual Medicine.    


Member of

  • Royal Australian & New Zealand College of Psychiatrists. MRANZCP 1981 -


Selected publications


Investigator on


Education and training

  • DPM, University of Melbourne 1981
  • PhD, Monash University 1979
  • MB BS, University of Melbourne 1970

Awards and honors

  • World Association for Sexology, 2005
  • North American Menopause Society (NAMS)/Pfizer Perimenopause Research Award, 2002
  • Commonwealth Award of Excellence for Good Practice in Women's Health: the Melbourne Women's Midlife Health Project, 1997
  • Officer of the Order of Australia, AO, 1994
  • Fellow of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists, 1983
  • Book of the Year Award "Arthur Shapiro Hypnosis Book Award", American Society of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis, 1981
  • Fulton Scholarship, 1970
  • Exhibition in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, 1970
  • Hubert Sydney Jacobs Prize in Clinical Gynaecology, 1970
  • Robert Gartley Healey Prize in Obstetrics, 1970
  • Sir A E Rowden White Prize in Clinical Obstetrics, 1970
  • Robert Marshall Allan Memorial Prize, 1970