Menopausal Symptoms Tied to Hip Fracture Risk

A new study shows that women who experience menopausal symptoms (eg, severe hot flashes, night sweats) tend to have lower bone mineral density and higher rates of hip fractures vs. women who do not have menopausal symptoms. Results from the study are published in the Endocrine Society’s Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

Postmenopausal women experience faster breakdown of bone tissue than replacement, which places them at greater risk of developing osteoporosis.

The prospective cohort study looked at data from 23,573 subjects aged 50-79 years in the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) Clinical Trial. The study tracked women’s annual visits for an average of eight years. Women were asked about menopausal symptoms during the initial visit and were monitored for fractures during the follow-up period.

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Study analysis showed that women who experienced moderate or severe hot flashes entering the study were more likely to have a hip fracture during the follow-up period vs. women who experienced no menopausal symptoms. Further, women with moderate to severe menopausal symptoms had lower bone mass density at the neck and spine during the follow-up period vs. women with no menopausal symptoms.

Researchers conclude that more research is required to better link bone health and menopausal symptoms. This would aid healthcare professionals in counseling women on improved prevention of osteoporosis and other bone disorders.

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