Climacteric : the journal of the International Menopause Society

Relation between oxidative stress and climacteric symptoms in early postmenopausal women.

PMID 25536006


To evaluate the relation between climacteric symptoms or other risk factors for cardiovascular disease and oxidative status of postmenopausal women. Cross-sectional investigation performed at the outpatient service for the menopause at the University Hospital, on 50 apparently healthy women in physiological postmenopause. The whole-blood free oxygen radical test (FORT), free oxygen radical defence (FORD), age, months since menopause, weight, body mass index, waist circumference, waist-to-hip ratio, estradiol, lipids, glucose, insulin, insulin resistance (glucose/insulin and HOMA-IR), and fibrinogen were evaluated. The Greene Climacteric Scale with its subscales was used to evaluate climacteric symptoms. The pulsatility index, an index of downstream blood flow resistance, was determined for both the internal carotid artery and the brachial artery. The waist-to-hip ratio (r = 0.540; p = 0.0001), estradiol (r = 0.548; p = 0.0004) and waist circumference (r = 0.345; p = 0.02) were independently related to blood FORT. The score in the Greene vasomotor subscale was the only parameter independently related to blood FORD (r = 0.554; p = 0.0001). FORT was not related to the artery pulsatility index, while FORD was negatively related to the pulsatility index of both the internal carotid (r = 0.549; p = 0.0001) and the brachial (r = 0.484; p = 0.0001) arteries. In postmenopausal women, abdominal adiposity and hypoestrogenism increase oxidative stress. Climacteric symptoms, particularly vasomotor symptoms, markedly reduce antioxidant defences. Lower antioxidant defences are associated with higher resistance to blood flow in the great arteries. In women early after the menopause, visceral fat, hypoestrogenism and climacteric symptoms may increase the risk for cardiovascular disease.