Onset of early natural menopause was associated with increased likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes in postmenopausal women examined in a recent study.
“Our findings show that women who experience menopause before the age of 40 were almost four times more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than those experiencing menopause after 55 years old,” Eralda Asllanaj, MD, MSc, of the department of epidemiology at Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, Netherlands, told Medical Economics. “Moreover, those who had menopause between 40 to 44 years were 2.4 times more likely to have diabetes later in life.”
These results were in published in Diabetologia, in the study "Age at natural menopause and risk of type 2 diabetes: a prospective cohort study."
According to Asllanaj, the age at the final menstrual period is crucial not only for reproductive ageing but also for future disease risk and mortality. Previous studies have established a link between age at menopause and cardiovascular disease, reporting that experiencing early menopause (age below 45 years) increased the risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
“Considering that type 2 diabetes is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease and commonly manifests during the mid-life coinciding with the timing of the menopausal transition in women, we conducted this study in order to examine whether age at menopause is associated with risk of type 2 diabetes,” Asllanaj said.