Early Onset, Frequent Hot Flashes Linked To Increased Cardiovascular Disease Risk

Dr. Rebecca Clark Thurston Ph.D Associate Professor of Psychiatry, Epidemiology, Psychology, and Clinical and Translational Science University of PittsburghMedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Dr. Rebecca Clark Thurston Ph.D
Associate Professor of Psychiatry, Epidemiology, Psychology, and Clinical and Translational Science
University of Pittsburgh

 

MedicalResearch: What is the background for these studies? What are the main findings?

Dr. Clark Thurston: The understanding of women’s cardiovascular disease and the role that reproductive factors play in women’s cardiovascular health is evolving. There are some studies showing links between menopausal hot flashes and cardiovascular disease risk in women. These studies help further refine this understanding. We showed in two separate studies that women who have hot flashes, particularly frequent hot flashes early in midlife, have poorer vascular health on certain indices.

MedicalResearch: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Dr. Clark Thurston: Women who experience hot flashes at relatively young ages – in their 40’s – particularly if the hot flashes are frequent, should be sure they are getting their regular health check ups. Stay on top of their blood pressure, lipids, glucose, and weight. If they are smoking, stop, if they are overweight, now is the time to try to lose. Start exercising. Midlife is really the time for women to set up good heart health behaviors that will serve them well as they age. Women should remember that cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death among women.

MedicalResearch: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Dr. Clark Thurston: We need to look at other aspects of cardiovascular health in relation to hot flashes. We need to really refine that age at which hot flashes are most predictive of adverse vascular health. We need to understand how these data might inform our approaches to treating hot flashes among younger women, and may encourage us as providers to use methods that have the lowest cardiovascular risk associated with them.

Citation:

ACC 15 abstracts: March 2015

Early-Onset Menopausal Vasomotor Symptoms Are Associated with Endothelial Dysfunction: The National Heart Lung and Blood Institute-Sponsored Women’s Ischemia Syndrome Evaluation (WISE) Study and

Physiologically-Assessed Hot Flashes Are Associated with Poorer Endothelial Function Among Early Midlife Women
MedicalResearch.com Interview with:Dr. Rebecca Clark Thurston Ph.D (2015). Early Onset, Frequent Hot Flashes Linked To Increased Cardiovascular Disease Risk

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