Diabetes in Menopause: Risks and Management

(E-pub Ahead of Print)

Author(s): Stavroula Α. Paschou *, Panagiotis Anagnostis, Dimitra I. Pavlou, Andromachi Vryonidou, Dimitrios G. Goulis, Irene Lambrinoudaki.

Journal Name: Current Vascular Pharmacology

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The aim of this review is to present, critically appraise and qualitatively synthesize current evidence on the risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) development during menopause, the management of climacteric symptoms in women with T2DM and the management of T2DM in postmenopausal women. Menopause represents the end of reproductive life in women, as a result of ovarian aging. It is characterized by substantial decrease in the endogenous oestrogen concentrations and it is accompanied by alterations in body weight, adipose tissue distribution and energy expenditure, as well as insulin secretion, insulin sensitivity and activity that can predispose to the development of T2DM, independently of, and additively to, aging. Many women in midlife experience climacteric symptoms, including hot flushes and night sweats, resulting in an indication to receive Hormone Replacement Treatment (HRT). HRT has a favourable effect on glucose homeostasis both in women without and with T2DM. The latter was considered in the past as a cardiovascular disease (CVD) equivalent, which would suggest that women with the disease should not receive HRT. However, nowadays evidence exists to support an individualized approach of women based on their CVD risk, as some women with T2DM may be excellent candidates for HRT. Regarding T2DM management for women in menopause, lifestyle intervention, including diet and exercise, constitutes its cornerstone. However, most of these women will eventually require pharmacologic therapy. The most suitable agents should be selected according to their metabolic, cardiovascular and bone effects, taking into consideration the specific characteristics and comorbidities of each postmenopausal woman.

Keywords: type 2 diabetes mellitus, menopause, hormone replacement treatment, cardiovascular disease

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(E-pub Ahead of Print)
DOI: 10.2174/1570161116666180625124405
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