Freeman Medical Focus: Hearts

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Heart disease is a growing concern for any patient as they age – but that’s especially true for women in menopause.

“Estrogen is protective of the heart and so when people do not have naturally produced estrogen through surgical or natural menopause, then their risk of heart disease approaches that of men who are not protected by estrogen,” says Dr. John Cox, cardiologist.

Freeman Cardiologist Dr. John Cox points to a recent article focusing on the frequency of menopause symptoms.

“Not the severity, but how often do you have hot flashes has some predictive value in the frequency of heart diseases, heart attacks, and heart flare ups. And so no one really knows why that is but probably because suddenly you don’t have estrogen,” says Dr. John Cox.

Dr. Cox adds that the timing of taking estrogen as a treatment can make a difference.

“So if you’re going to go on estrogen, you need to go on it right away when you first start having those symptoms. The down side we all know there’s an increase in female cancers associated with that – so it’s a trade off,” says Dr. Cox.

Something you should discuss with your doctor.

The Freeman Medical Focus was sponsored by Freeman Health System.

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