Updated: Nov 8
Studies are shedding light on the potential link between the severity of some menopausal symptoms, particularly vasomotor symptoms, and an increased risk of cardiovascular issues (CVD).
Vasomotor symptoms include hot flushes and night sweats.
While previous beliefs suggested that severe hot flushes and night sweats simply indicated an increased risk of CVD, recent evidence is shifting this perspective. New studies are reshaping our understanding by highlighting a more direct connection between vasomotor symptoms and actual clinical cardiovascular events.
It is uncertain what classifies as severe. It is probably due to severity, frequency, and timing. Further research is clearly needed to understand more.
Hormones, particularly oestrogen, play a crucial role in this relationship. When oestrogen levels fluctuate during menopause, this can lead to vasomotor symptoms.
These fluctuations may also affect the health of blood vessels and the heart.
Oestrogen has a protective effect on the cardiovascular system, promoting healthy blood flow and maintaining the flexibility of blood vessels. As oestrogen levels decline, the risk of CVD may rise.
It's important to note that this connection between severity and CVD has only been observed in women experiencing natural menopause at the average age.
There is limited (or none at all) information is available for women undergoing early menopause or induced menopause, even though they often experience severe symptoms.
The Importance of Proactive Health:
It is a complex situation as there could be other factors affecting both vasomotor symptoms and CVD events. However, if you're experiencing severe hot flushes and night sweats, it's advisable to consult a healthcare provider. They can evaluate your cardiovascular health and offer advice on how to handle these symptoms while minimising the risk of CVD.
Regardless of your age or menopausal stage, taking a proactive approach to your health is essential.
While the link between severe vasomotor symptoms in menopause and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease is still emerging, it's clear that menopausal women should pay attention to their heart health. Particularly the earlier that you experience menopause.
The previous two blogs have highlighted steps that can be taken to support your heart health. If you would like accountability or help with this – make an appointment for a free consultation. The earlier you start, the better.
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