CHICAGO (AP) — The hot flashes that bother many women during menopause might actually be a good thing, according to a government study. But that depends on when they strike.
Women who had hot flashes at the start of menopause but not later seemed to have a lower risk for heart attack and death than women who never had hot flashes, or those whose symptoms persisted long after menopause began.
By contrast, among the few women who developed hot flashes late -- in some cases many years after menopause began -- there were more heart attacks and deaths when compared with the other groups.
The research involved more than 60,000 women followed for an average of almost 10 years.
The study appears online in the journal Menopause.