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Menopausal Symptoms May Increase Risk of Hip Fracture

A recent study suggests that women who have moderate to severe hot flashes and night sweats during menopause may be at higher risk of hip fracture than their peers due to lower bone mineral density.

Participants in the study included 23,573 women between the ages of 50 and 79 who took part in the Women’s Health Initiative Clinical Trial. The women were tracked for an average of eight years.

The women reported on their menopausal symptoms - including hot flashes and night sweats - in the initial visit at the onset of the study. They were then monitored for fractures during the follow-up period. Additionally, 4,867 of them had their bone mineral density measured in order to participate in a sub-study.

At the conclusion of the study, the researchers found that the women who experienced moderate or severe hot flashes were more likely to suffer from a hip fracture during the follow-up period than those who did not have menopausal symptoms.

The researchers adjusted for age, body mass index, and other demographic factors and found that women who had moderate to severe menopausal symptoms also had lower bone mass density in the neck and spine when compared to women with no menopause symptoms.

The researchers believe that this is due to the fact that menopause speeds up the body’s normal process of bone loss.

Researchers from the University of California conducted the study. It was published on December 18, 2014, in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.

Hip fracture is a serious risk for everyone as they age. Previous studies suggest that increasing intake of calcium and vitamin D, omega-3s, and vitamin E may help lower the risk of fracturing a hip.

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