No extra menopause risk

Menopause does not increase the risk of diabetes in women who are already at high risk, according to a recent study of 1237 women aged between 40 and 65 years who were enrolled in the Diabetes Prevention Program, a clinical trial of adults with glucose intolerance.

The results suggest that postmenopausal women have no higher risk for diabetes, regardless of whether they experienced natural or surgical menopause. Previously, it was believed that menopause speeds the progression to diabetes because postmenopausal women have relatively higher levels of testosterone.

Among women whose oestrogen production ended as a result of having their ovaries removed, but who made lifestyle changes (losing weight and exercising), cases of diabetes were extremely low. For every year that 100 of these women were observed, only 1.1 women developed diabetes.

Menopause, Vol. 18, No. 8, 2011

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