Age at natural menopause and hypertension among middle-aged and older Chinese women

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Abstract

Objectives:

Earlier age at natural menopause has been associated with cardiovascular disease in several studies, but evidence of its association with hypertension is lacking. We aimed to examine the relationship between age at natural menopause and hypertension among middle-aged and older Chinese women.

Methods:

A total of 13 406 postmenopausal women (mean age 63.5 years) were enrolled from the Dongfeng–Tongji cohort study in Hubei province, China. Age at natural menopause was self-reported and was categorized into three groups (≤45, 46–52, or ≥53 years). Logistic regression models were used to calculate the odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for hypertension in relation to age at natural menopause.

Results:

Of the study participants, 6690 (49.9%) women were diagnosed as hypertension. The mean age at natural menopause was 49.3 ± 3.3 years. After adjustment for potential confounders, the ORs of hypertension for women who reached menopause at age 45 or less and 46–52 years were 1.27 (95% CI, 1.08, 1.50) and 1.14 (95% CI, 1.01, 1.29), respectively, compared with those who reached menopause at age at least 53 years. Each 1-year delay in menopause was associated with 2% decrease in prevalence of hypertension (OR, 0.98; 95% CI, 0.97, 0.99).

Conclusion:

Our findings suggested that earlier age at natural menopause was related to prevalence of hypertension independent of potential confounders. Identification of women with earlier menopause offers a window of opportunity to improve women's health during the postmenopausal years.

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