Menopause and serum cholesterol: Differences between blacks and whites: The minnesota heart survey

Jasenka Demirovic, J. Michael Sprafka, Aaron R. Folsom, David Laitinen, Henry Blackburn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations

Abstract

The relation between menopause and serum total and high-density-lipoprotein cholesterol was examined by the Minnesota Heart Survey in a cross-sectional, population-based study of 344 black women and 474 white women aged 35-54 years from the Twin Cities metropolitan area in 1985-1986. Analysis of covariance was used to examine differences in serum total and high-density-lipoprotein cholesterol in black women and white women by menopausal status, adjusting for the effects of age, educational level, cigarette smoking, body mass index, exercise, alcohol consumption, diabetes mellitus, sex hormone, beta Mocker, and diuretic use. Among whites, adjusted serum total cholesterol was 13 mg/dl higher in postmenopausal than in premenopausal women (p < 0.002). Black postmenopausal women had slightly higher serum total cholesterol than did their premenopausal counterparts (5.4 mg/dl). However, this was not statistically significant. An interaction term in a linear regression model confirmed a racial difference in the total cholesterol association with menopause (p < 0.02). The higher total cholesterol levels observed in white postmenopausal women were mainly among those with natural menopause (20.7 mg/dl higher than premenopausal, p < 0.0003) and those with a hysterectomy and at least one intact ovary (11.0 mg/dl higher, p = 0.05). Among black women, only the subgroup with a hysterectomy and a bilateral oophorectomy had a significantly higher serum total cholesterol (19.9 mg/dl higher than premenopausal, p < 0.05). There was no significant association between high-density-lipoprotein cholesterol and any type of menopause in either black women or white women. Our findings may reflect a true physiologic difference in the relation between menopause and serum total cholesterol between American blacks and whites. The lack of a significant association between menopause and high-density-lipoprotein cholesterol in either race raises the possibility that menopause may not affect atherosclerosis risk via reduced high-density-lipoprotein cholesterol. Am J Epidemiol 1992;136:155-64.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)155-164
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican journal of epidemiology
Volume136
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 15 1992

Keywords

  • Blacks
  • Cholesterol
  • Menopause
  • Whites

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