HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE AMERICAN SOCIETY FOR REPRODUCTIVE MEDICINE’S 2021 SCIENTIFIC CONGRESS
Women with endometriosis have a 36 percent increased risk of stroke later in life, according to the results of a prospective study presented at the American Society of Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) Scientific Congress on Oct, 18, 2021.
The researchers followed women in the Nurses’ Health Study II for 28 years after they had a diagnosis of endometriosis confirmed via laparoscopy, to investigate whether there was an association with stroke. They found that there was an increased stroke risk that persisted even after taking into account known risk factors, such as hypertension and diabetes.
The association was most pronounced among women with a history of hormone therapy and those who had a prior hysterectomy or oophorectomy (removal of the ovaries). There were no differences in the relationship between endometriosis and stroke according to age, infertility history, body mass index or menopausal status.
Endometriosis is a painful condition that affects up to 10 percent of American women of childbearing age. It occurs when endometrial tissue that normally lines the uterus accumulates outside of the uterus on other reproductive organs, leading to inflammation, swelling and scarring of the normal surrounding tissue.
“We have been aware that there may be a link between endometriosis and cardiovascular disease later in life. The value of this work is showing the specific relationship between endometriosis and stroke. It is very important that we continue to do the research to allow us to better understand this relationship,” said Hugh Taylor, MD, President of the ASRM.
The researchers conclude that women should be aware of their endometriosis history, discuss signs and symptoms of cardiovascular diseases, including stroke, with their health care providers, and have appropriate screenings.
O-1, L. Farland, et al, LAPAROSCOPICALLY-CONFIRMED ENDOMETRIOSIS AND RISK OF INCIDENT STROKE: A PROSPECTIVE COHORT STUDY