Menopause hot flashes vary

Menopause hot flashes varyHot flashes associated with menopause are not experienced the same way by all women, according to the latest findings. Nearly 80 percent of menopausal women get hot flashes or night sweats, but timing and duration of these symptoms vary depending on a number of factors. Namely, body weight, race, education, and dietary habits affect the symptom patterns.

Study author Rebecca Thurston said, “We used to think these symptoms lasted from three to five years, right around the time of the final menstrual period. We now know that these symptoms persist for far longer — typically seven to 10 years — and occur at different times for different women.”


The researchers followed nearly 1,500 women transitioning through menopause over the course of 15 years. Each year, the women were asked to report on their symptoms. Based on their responses, the researchers uncovered the following patterns:

  • Early symptom onset beginning 11 years before the final menstruation and declining after menopause
  • Symptom onset close to the final menstruation with a later decline
  • Early onset with high symptom frequency
  • Persistently low symptom frequency

Further analysis focused on race, education, weight, and health habits – the researchers found all these factors played a role in the patterns.
For example, Chinese women were less likely to experience symptoms through the transition period, while less educated women and those who consumed more alcohol were more likely to have symptoms and for a longer period.

Although the predictors weren’t much of a surprise, the researchers were struck by the variety of symptoms and patterns.

The findings were published in Menopause: The Journal of the North American Menopause Society.

Also, read Bel Marra Health’s article: Menopause-related hot flashes, night sweats, can be reduced by acupuncture: Study.

Related: How long does menopause last?

Author Bio

Mohan Garikiparithi got his degree in medicine from Osmania University (University of Health Sciences). He practiced clinical medicine for over a decade before he shifted his focus to the field of health communications. During his active practice he served as the head of the Dept. of Microbiology in a diagnostic centre in India. On a three-year communications program in Germany, Mohan developed a keen interest in German Medicine (Homoeopathy), and other alternative systems of medicine. He now advocates treating different medical conditions without the use of traditional drugs. An ardent squash player, Mohan believes in the importance of fitness and wellness.