Heart Disease Prediction

Does Rapid Menopause Transition Help Predict Heart Disease?

Women who transition through menopause in less than three years are at an increased risk for a higher rate of progression of early onset heart disease, according to an observational study led by C. Noel Bairey Merz, MD, director of the Women’s Heart Center at the Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute.

The study evaluated women between the ages of 45 and 60 who had never been diagnosed with cardiovascular disease. The women who transitioned from being premenopausal to fully postmenopausal at the conclusion of the study had more buildup of fatty plaque in their carotid arteries, suggesting that their rapid transition put them at greater risk for earlier development of heart disease.

“The findings suggest that we determine if women undergoing a more rapid menopause might benefit from early hormone replacement therapy,” Dr. Bairey Merz said.

A Specialized clinic for menopausal women at risk for heart disease recently opened at the Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute Women’s Heart Center. The Advanced Preventive Women’s Clinic offers comprehensive risk assessments specifically designed for women in menopause transition. The clinic offers state-of-the-art screenings and personalized medical therapies, including high-risk hormone counseling.

“This clinic is designed for women who are at higher risk for heart disease who are seeking to treat their menopause symptoms while simultaneously taking steps to prevent heart problems,” says Chrisandra Shufelt, MD, assistant director of the Women’s Heart Center and a North American Menopause Society (NAMS) certified menopause practitioner. “Menopause is a time for a woman to evaluate all of her heart disease risk factors. From blood pressure to cholesterol, and finding the right menopause management, this clinic will help ensure that the next chapter of her life can be productive and healthy.”