“The Link Between Menopause and Alzheimer’s,” by Sumathi Reddy, Wall Street Journal (gated)
“Women make up nearly two-thirds of patients with Alzheimer’s disease in the U.S., in part because they live longer than men. Now, researchers are exploring whether hormonal changes related to menopause affect the development of the disease. … Most people think of how menopause affects fertility. But Dr. Mosconi says its effect on the brain is what results in night sweats, hot flashes and even memory changes. Those symptoms are caused by declining levels of estrogen and other hormones. Estrogen protects the female brain from aging and stimulates neural activity. It may help prevent the buildup of clusters of proteins, or plaques, that are linked to Alzheimer’s disease. Studies show that when estrogen production declines during menopause, the brain’s metabolism appears to slow down and it becomes less efficient.”
LTC Comment (from Stephen A. Moses, President, Center for Long-Term Care Reform): Yet another worrisome aspect of Alzheimer’s.