Early Menopause Linked to Heart Disease Risk
Going through menopause before age 46 can make women twice as likely to have a heart attack or stroke as women who hit menopause later, according to a recent study
from The Journal of the North American Menopause Society
Dr. Melissa Wellons, lead author of the study from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and her colleagues collected health information through surveys of 2,509 women. Twenty-eight percent of these women had gone through menopause before age 46-either naturally or due to a hysterectomy.
At the beginning of the study, none of the women had cardiovascular disease. Researchers tracked them for an average of five years to see who eventually had a heart attack or stroke.
They found 23 of the women who had gone through menopause early, and 27 who hadn't, suffered a heart attack or cardiac arrest or died from heart disease. That translates to 3.3 percent of women in the early menopause group and 1.5 percent of the other group. Similarly, 2.6 percent of the early menopause group had a stroke during the study, compared to 1 percent of women who hit menopause later.
For more on this study, click here for the Reuters Health article.