Decline in Lung Function Linked to Menopausal Status

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Respiratory health may deteriorate during reproductive aging.
Respiratory health may deteriorate during reproductive aging.

HealthDay News — Menopause is associated with accelerated decline in lung function, according to a study published in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

Kai Triebner, from the University of Bergen in Norway, and colleagues examined whether lung function decline is accelerated in women experiencing menopause. Serum samples, spirometry, and questionnaire data about respiratory and reproductive health were obtained from 3 study waves of the population-based longitudinal European Community Respiratory Health Survey for 1,438 women. The correlations between menopausal status and lung function decline were assessed, with adjustment for confounding variables, including age, height, weight, pack-years, and current smoking.

The researchers observed a correlation for menopausal status with accelerated decline in lung function. Compared with women menstruating regularly, in transitional and postmenopausal women, the adjusted mean forced vital capacity (FVC) decline increased by -10.2 and -12.5 mL/year, respectively. For transitional and postmenopausal women, the adjusted mean forced expiratory volume in one second decline increased by -3.8 and -5.2 mL/year, respectively.

"Lung function declined more rapidly among transitional and postmenopausal women, in particular for FVC, beyond the expected age change," the authors write. "Clinicians should be aware that respiratory health often deteriorates during reproductive aging."

Reference

Triebner K, Matulonga B, Johannessen A, et al. Menopause is associated with accelerated lung function decline [published online April 15, 2017]. Am J Resp Crit Care Med. doi: 10.1164/rccm.201605-0968OC

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