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Does elevated body mass modify the influence of postmenopausal estrogen replacement on atherosclerosis progression: results from the estrogen in the prevention of atherosclerosis trial

  • Wendy J. Mack
    Correspondence
    Corresponding author. Department of Preventive Medicine, Keck School of Medicine, 1540 Alcazar Street, CHP-218, Los Angeles, CA 90033, USA. Tel.: +1-323-442-1820; fax: +1-323-442-2993
    Affiliations
    Department of Preventive Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA

    Atherosclerosis Research Unit, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
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  • Afshan B. Hameed
    Affiliations
    Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA

    Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
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  • Min Xiang
    Affiliations
    Department of Preventive Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA

    Atherosclerosis Research Unit, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
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  • Subir Roy
    Affiliations
    Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
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  • Cristin C. Slater
    Affiliations
    Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
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  • Frank Z. Stanczyk
    Affiliations
    Department of Preventive Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA

    Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
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  • Rogerio A. Lobo
    Affiliations
    Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, NY, USA
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  • Chao-ran Liu
    Affiliations
    Atherosclerosis Research Unit, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
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  • Ci-hua Liu
    Affiliations
    Atherosclerosis Research Unit, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
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  • Howard N. Hodis
    Affiliations
    Department of Preventive Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA

    Atherosclerosis Research Unit, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA

    Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA
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      Abstract

      Objective: To determine whether the estrogen-related reduction in atherosclerosis progression demonstrated in the estrogen in the prevention of atherosclerosis trial (EPAT) is modified by body mass index (BMI). Study Design: Subgroup analyses were performed using data from EPAT, a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial designed to determine whether unopposed 17β-estradiol administered for a 2-year treatment period reduces the progression of subclinical atherosclerosis in healthy postmenopausal women. The primary trial endpoint was the rate of change of common carotid artery intima-media thickness (IMT). In this subgroup analysis, the sample was divided into 122 women with BMI<30 kg/m2 and 77 women with BMI⩾30 kg/m2. Statistical analysis was performed using mixed general linear models to evaluate whether the treatment effects on IMT progression rates differed in the two BMI groups. Results: There was no significant difference in the estradiol treatment effect on IMT progression rates between postmenopausal women with BMI<30 vs. ⩾30 kg/m2 (P=0.52). In the 77 subjects who did not use lipid-lowering therapy, there was significant improvement in IMT with estradiol treatment that was evident in both BMI groups (P=0.48 for differences between BMI groups). Conclusions: In contrast to the epidemiological observation that obese postmenopausal women do not derive benefit from estrogen replacement therapy, results of this study indicate that estradiol treatment is beneficial in preventing progression of atherosclerosis regardless of initial BMI. Condensation: Estradiol treatment is beneficial in preventing progression of atherosclerosis in postmenopausal women not receiving lipid-lowering therapy, regardless of their initial body mass index.

      Keywords

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