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Medically reviewed by Dr. Kimberly Langdon Cull, M.D. on July 25, 2023

Insomnia increases the risk of coronary heart disease. Moreover, insomnia at different ages has a different effect on coronary heart disease risk among menopausal women.

The menopausal transition is associated with a myriad of vasomotor and non-vasomotor symptoms. Postmenopausal women also exhibit an increased risk of coronary heart disease (CHD), which can be associated with menopausal symptoms. A recent study utilized the Mendelian randomization approach to explore the association between CHD risk and menopausal symptoms. 

It was concluded that only insomnia contributed to an increased CHD risk, and the ages near menopause also have a different influence on the CHD risk in the context of insomnia. The findings are published in the journal Heliyon.

Baseline Characteristics

The study included a total of 177,497 British women, with an average age of 60.7 years. The symptom and non-symptom groups did not differ significantly based on age except for urinary tract infections; however, alcohol drinkers were younger compared to non-alcohol-drinking study participants.

Association Between Menopausal Symptoms and Lifetime Coronary Heart Disease Risk

The Mendelian randomization analysis indicated the CHD risk increased by 1.0717 for anxiety, 1.394 for insomnia, 1.097 for fatigue, 1.004 for vertigo, 1.0251 for urinary tract infection, and 0.9023 for nervousness. Based on the sensitivity analysis results, there was a significant causal relationship between insomnia and CHD.

Insomnia Symptoms and Ages Near Menopause

The study results showed a significant effect of insomnia on increasing the CHD risk in study participants ≥ 51 years old; however, insomnia in ≥ 45-year-old or ≥ 48-year-old study participants did not significantly influence increased CHD risk.

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Only insomnia, among other menopausal symptoms, increases the risk for CHD. Moreover, insomnia at different ages has a different effect on CHD risk among menopausal women.

Source

Lian, I., Sie, J. J., Chang, C., Fann, C., & Huang, C. (2023). Effects of insomnia and non-vasomotor menopausal symptoms on coronary heart disease risk: a mendelian randomization study. Heliyon, 9(2), e13569. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.heliyon.2023.e13569