Clinical Edge

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Vasomotor Symptoms & Sleep Apnea Risk

Menopause; ePub 2017 Oct 30; Gao, et al

In midlife women, self-reported severe or very severe vasomotor symptoms (VMS) are associated with increased risk for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), a recent study found. The STOP-BANG to evaluate OSA and Menopause Rating Scale (MRS) were administered to 2,935 women seen in the Women’s Health Clinic at Mayo Clinic between May 2015 and December 2016. 1,691 women were included in the analysis, which compared total MRS and VMS ratings. Researchers found:

  • Total MRS scores were significantly higher in women with intermediate/high-risk OSA scores compared with those with low-risk scores.
  • Women at intermediate/high OSA risk were older, had more education, self-reported hypertension, had BMI >35 kg/m2, and were less likely to be married or employed.
  • Self-reported severe/very severe VMS were significantly associated with intermediate/high risk vs low risk for OSA.
  • After adjustments, the odds of having intermediate/high risk for OSA were 1.87 times higher for those with severe/very severe VMS vs those with none/mild/moderate VMS.


Gao CC, Kapoor E, Lipford MC, et al. Association of vasomotor symptoms and sleep apnea risk in midlife women. [Published online ahead of print October 30, 2017]. Menopause. doi:10.1097/GME.0000000000001020.