Hot flashes reduce heart risks

2011-02-25 22:49

Chicago - Women who have hot flashes and night sweats at the start of menopause may be less likely to have a heart attack later in life, US researchers said on Thursday.

But women who develop these symptoms later in menopause may have higher heart disease risks, the team reported.

"Our study provides reassurance that the classic symptoms of early menopause, experienced by the majority of women at mid-life, are not a marker of an increased risk of heart attack or stroke in the future," Dr JoAnn Manson of Brigham and Women's Hospital, who worked on the study, said in a statement.

The findings come from a new analysis of the large clinical trial called the Women's Health Initiative in 2002 that showed hormone replacement therapy raised the risk of breast and ovarian cancers and strokes in older women, and doctors now prescribe it sparingly. It was reported in the journal Menopause.

Mason and colleagues found that women with hot flashes or night sweats at the start of menopause were no more likely to have a heart attack, stroke or to die during the study period than women who did not have these symptoms.

Higher risk

And there was some suggestion that night sweats and hot flashes reduced those risks. For example, women with early hot flashes and night sweats had a 17% lower risk of stroke, an 11% lower risk of heart disease and an 11% lower risk of death during the study period from any cause.

Women who developed hot flashes or night sweats later on in menopause, however, had a 32% higher risk of heart attack and a 29% higher risk of death compared with women who got these symptoms early on.

About three out of four menopausal women experience hot flashes or night sweats early in menopause, the team said.

  • Gundaan - 2011-02-25 23:43

    For God's sake ...learn to spell ...not hot flashes " Flushes ' ...but I guess this is a result of dumbing down the matric ... whitey ...previously advantaged ....

      Umfubi - 2011-02-26 10:23

      Actually the Yanks call them flashes. I do agree, we aren't yanks, so here they are flushes.

  • Michele Marnewick - 2011-02-26 00:25

    American and many other nationalities refer to them as hot flashes actually

  • Ralph - 2011-02-26 00:37

    What is a hot flash??????? ha ha, where is the Editor???

  • Peter - 2011-02-27 08:06

    The best way to avoid the heart attacks is through following a good diet (increase veggie and raw food intake), reduce your fried food intake and avoid margarine (and other hydrogenated ingredients). Saying that some unpleasant bodily symptom will reduce the likelihood of a heart attack happening to you makes no sense what to ever; it is a smoke screen designed to cloud the mind.

      Umfubi - 2011-02-27 12:32

      I'm not sure about the smoke screen part, but certainly I agree these conclusions may be spurious. How do they know it isn't the bad lifestyle habits that influence the occurrence of hot 'flashes' (flushes) in the first place? For those interested, here is a more comprehensive article on the study - which must be read CAREFULLY, scientific articles are extremely carefully worded:

  • pawsaw - 2011-02-28 17:20

    As a woman going through them I prefer to think of them as power surges!

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