(HealthDay News) – For women around the time of menopause, early vasomotor symptoms (VMS) correlate with lower levels of one marker of endothelial dysfunction, while persistent and late VMS correlate with one or more cardiovascular disease risk markers.

Emily Szmuilowicz, MD, from Northwestern University in Chicago, and colleagues examined the correlation between VMS and circulating cardiovascular disease risk factors and blood pressure (BP) in the Women’s Health Initiative Observational Study (WHI-OS). The status of VMS was classified as no VMS, early VMS (at menopause onset), late VMS (at time of enrollment to WHI-OS), or persistent VMS (at both times). The associations were examined in partially- and fully-adjusted models.

The researchers found that, in the partially-adjusted model, persistent VMS correlated with increased systolic and diastolic BP, while late VMS correlated with higher systolic BP, compared to no VMS. There was no association between early VMS and BP in either model. In the partially-adjusted model, persistent and late VMS correlated with higher white blood cell count. Persistent VMS correlated with higher glucose and insulin, and early VMS was linked to lower vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 in both models.

“Our study provides reassurance that the common experience of menopausal symptoms in early menopause is not associated with increases in blood pressure or other risk markers for cardiovascular disease,” Szmuilowicz said in a statement.

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