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    Hot Flashes and High Blood Pressure
    2labsforme posted:
    Hi Everyone,
    Been a while since I've been on this site but am seeking some advice and guidance. I was doing well for about 6 months with harldy any hot flashes, problems sleeping and my mildly high bp had gone back down oto almost normal levels. During that time I was exercising regularly, taking multivitamins and natural BP herbs along with COQ10, and Grape Seed Extract. I am still doing the same things but within the past 2 weeks my hot flashes have returned with a vengence causing lack of sleep, forgetfulness and fatigue. I also noticed that Im more anxious and my BP has gone back up. I'm wondering if anyone has experienced this during menopause and if its normal. I'm also wondering if Dr. Minken can comment on the issue of the BP - is there a correlation between the return of my hot flashes and lack of sleep and the increase in BP? I could use any help or information out there. I'm truly frustrated and don't really know who or where to turn
    Mary Jane Minkin, MD responded:
    Dear 2labsforme,
    I'm glad the last few months were good; my hunch is that you are now further into the menopausal process, which is why the hot flashes have returned. Could menopausal changes be related to elevated blood pressure? yes, it is possible; estrogen does act as a "vasodilator" relaxing blood vessels, which will lower the blood pressure. If you were to take estrogen now, I would recommend a transdermal form, which would be most likely to help with the blood pressure (patches or gels). If you prefer to avoid hormonal medications, you might try some Remifemin (German black cohosh), and/or "Icool" which is related to the isoflavones in soy. These are probably your most effective non herbal remedies.
    Good luck,
    Mary Jane
    2labsforme replied to Mary Jane Minkin, MD's response:
    Thanks so much for your reply. Im wondering how u feel about red clover and Promensil. Also do u think i will have a permanent BP issue once my estrogen is gone altogether and menopause is done?
    Mary Jane Minkin, MD replied to 2labsforme's response:
    Dear 2labsforme,
    Hard to say what the long term blood pressure issues will be; do keep an eye on it. As far as red clover/Promensil, it is also composed of isoflavones, weak plant estrogens, like soy; the data however as far as effectiveness is not overwhelming. However, I think it is fine to try it, and if it works for you, that's great.
    Good luck,
    Mary Jane
    chb431 replied to Mary Jane Minkin, MD's response:
    Dr. Minkin - I just Googled the same issue. I am 56 and began menopause 6 or 7 years ago. At first, hot flashes were horrible but they have been controlled with Estroven w/multi-vitamins (black cohosh.) Just in the past two weeks, the hot flashes are back and my BP is through the roof! I've never had a problem before. Are these two things related?
    Mary Jane Minkin, MD replied to chb431's response:
    Dear CHB431,
    The major question I am going to ask is when did your periods stop? When you say started menopause, is that when you started getting symptoms, or did your periods stop back then, too. The reason I ask,is that if your periods recently stopped, it would be quite reasonable to expect that as you got further into the menopausal process, your hot flashes could indeed get worse (and for some women, as estrogen levels drop, the blood pressure can go up.) However, if you had stopped having periods 6 years ago, and all of a sudden the hot flashes came back and the blood pressure is really crazy, there are some unusual conditions of the adrenal gland or believe it or not, a weird abnormality of the appendix that could give you crazy blood pressures and hot flashes. So if it is the latter, I would suggest a visit to the primary care folks (addressing it as a primary medical problem )-if the periods are recently stopped, the cause is more likely gynecological.
    Good luck,
    Mary Jane

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    For more information, visit the North American Menopause Society website