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Applied relaxation and oral estradiol treatment of vasomotor symptoms in postmenopausal women
Linköping University, Department of Molecular and Clinical Medicine, Obstetrics and gynecology. Linköping University, Faculty of Health Sciences.
Linköping University, Department of Molecular and Clinical Medicine, Obstetrics and gynecology. Linköping University, Faculty of Health Sciences.
Linköping University, Department of Molecular and Clinical Medicine, Obstetrics and gynecology. Linköping University, Faculty of Health Sciences.
Linköping University, Department of Molecular and Clinical Medicine, Obstetrics and gynecology. Linköping University, Faculty of Health Sciences.
2005 (English)In: Maturitas, ISSN 0378-5122, E-ISSN 1873-4111, Vol. 51, no 2, 154-162 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Objective: The aim was to evaluate and compare the effects of applied relaxation and oral estradiol treatment on hot flushes, mood and psychological wellbeing in postmenopausal women.

Patients and methods: In a prospective study, 30 postmenopausal women with vasomotor symptoms were randomized to applied relaxation or oral estradiol treatment during 12 weeks with 6 months follow-up. Number and severity of flushes were registered daily and Kupperman’s Index and a general estimate of climacteric symptoms, Mood Scale and Symptom Check List were completed at baseline, 4, 8 and 12 weeks of treatment, and 3 and 6 months after therapy.

Results: After 12 weeks of treatment, the number of flushes/24 h decreased significantly over time in both treatment groups. In the group receiving applied relaxation, the mean number of flushes/24 h decreased from 6.0 (95% CI 4.5–7.6) to 3.0 (95% CI 2.1–3.9) after 12 weeks of treatment. The mean number of flushes/24 h was 1.7 (95% CI 0.7–2.5) at 6 months follow-up; i.e. a 72% decrease. In the estrogen group, the mean number of flushes/24 h decreased from 8.4 to 0.8; i.e a 90% decrease in the number of flushes after 12 weeks of treatment. The significant change in flushes reached after 12 weeks of treatment and remained to 6 months after end of treatment in both groups. Estrogen therapy reduced flushes significantly faster than applied relaxation. General climacteric symptoms according to the Visual Analogue Scale and the Kupperman’s Index decreased significantly over time in both groups. General mood (Mood Scale) increased significantly in the estrogen group, but not in the group receiving applied relaxation. Psychological wellbeing according to Symptom Checklist, increased significantly from baseline to 12 weeks in both groups.

Conclusions: We suggest that applied relaxation may be used as an alternative treatment of vasomotor symptoms for postmenopausal women but should be further evaluated.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2005. Vol. 51, no 2, 154-162 p.
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-29369DOI: 10.1016/j.maturitas.2004.05.017Local ID: 14701OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-29369DiVA: diva2:250181
Available from: 2009-10-09 Created: 2009-10-09 Last updated: 2017-12-13Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Applied relaxation as treatment of vasomotor symptoms in postmenopausal women
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Applied relaxation as treatment of vasomotor symptoms in postmenopausal women
2005 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Vasomotor symptoms often disturb the night sleep and may lead to tiredness and mood disturbances. Many women who suffer from vasomotor symptoms ask for medical help and are often prescribed hormonal treatment. During the last years the popularity of HRT among women and doctors has decreased, probably because of the findings of long-term risks of HRT on breast cancer and the fact that the positive effects on cardiovascular health has not been confirmed in prospective randomized studies. The most effective treatment for hot flushes is HR T but for various reasons there is a need for developing alternative treatments. Relaxation therapy and behavioral therapies have been suggested for vasomotor symptoms but there are few randomized, controlled studies in this field, especially in women with breast cancer.

The general aim of this thesis was to evaluate a technique in behavior therapy, applied relaxation, as a possible treatment of vasomotor symptoms in healthy women and women treated for breast cancer.

The specific aims were:

• to assess if stress coping differed between postmenopausal women, who wanted therapy for vasomotor symptoms and postmenopausal women without symptoms and to assess if stress coping changed when women with vasomotor symptoms received estrogen therapy. 18 women were recruited to the target group and 17 women to the comparison group

• to evaluate if training applied relaxation for 12 weeks would decrease the number ofvasomotor symptoms and to evaluate if applied relaxation for 12 weeks would affect wellbeing in postmenopausal women seeking medical advice for vasomotor symptoms. 30 postmenopausal women were recruited and randomized to applied relaxation or estrogen therapy. In this study we also aimed to compare applied relaxation and estradiol as treatment of vasomotor symptoms in healthy postmenopausal women and also to compare the effects of applied relaxation and estradiol on wellbeing in healthy postmenopausal women

• to evaluate if applied relaxation or electro-acupuncture for 12 weeks would decrease the number of vasomotor symptoms in postmenopausal women treated for breast cancer and to evaluate if applied relaxation or electro-acupuncture for 12 weeks would affect wellbeing in postmenopausal women treated for breast cancer. 38 women with breast cancer and with moderate to sever vasomotor symptoms were recruited.

The main results were: Postmenopausal women bothered by vasomotor symptoms had significant lower stress coping ability measured with SCI, than women without symptoms.

Eleven out of 12 healthy postmenopausal women randomised to treatment with applied relaxation had a mean decrease of flushes about 77% six months after end of therapy. The reduction was significant and persisted six months after end of therapy. General psychological wellbeing and mood were significantly ameliorated in healthy postmenopausal women treated with applied relaxation.

Ten out of 14 breast cancer treated women randomised to treatment with applied relaxation had a mean decrease of flushes with 78 %. General psychological wellbeing was significantly ameliorated and this phenomenon appeared after the flushes were significantly reduced. Both the significant reduction of flushes and significantly ameliorated wellbeing persisted 6 months after end of therapy.

In summary: This thesis shows that that behavioral therapy with applied relaxation significantly decreases flushes and ameliorates general psychological wellbeing in postmenopausal women bothered by climacteric symptoms. Therefore we suggest that applied relaxation is a viable alternative treatment of vasomotor symptoms in healthy postmenopausal women and in women treated for breast cancer.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping Universitet, 2005. 88 p.
Series
Linköping University Medical Dissertations, ISSN 0345-0082 ; 900
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-30120 (URN)15595 (Local ID)91-85299-13-8 (ISBN)15595 (Archive number)15595 (OAI)
Public defence
2005-09-22, Berzeliussalen, Hälsouniversitetet, Linköping, 13:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Available from: 2009-10-09 Created: 2009-10-09 Last updated: 2012-10-02Bibliographically approved

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Nedstrand, ElisabethWijma, KlaasWyon, YvonneHammar, Mats

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