Hot flashes consider the most common menopause symptoms , which usually come in sudden episodes of feeling hotness in female upper body and face, that may be accompanied by: Night sweats , Headache, Nausea, Rapid heart beating, Dizziness,and Feeling suffocation Then the flash followed by flush, which leaves the body red with moist upper lip The flashes may end by a chill that lead the episode off.
Hot flashes causes
Menopause consider the first cause, when we talk about hot flashes , but that does not exclude other causes also may lead to hot flashes.
Menopause hot flashes
The lack of estrogen play the main and the most explained cause for menopause hot flashes , and it is explained by estrogen with drawal theory . Estrogen withdrawal theory , as in normal female body before menopause there is apart normal human brain that part called hypo thalamus, in hypothalamus there is a center called thermo regulation center that is responsible for our body temperature which is always set at our body set point 37 C , that is the thermo state of our normal body , if any thing change that set point to high or low the hypo thalamus start to send message by special neurotransmitter to the body to change its temperature by being low or high , and all that operation called thermo regulation of the body . Menopause hot flashes, the lack of estrogen disturb the normal thermo regulation operation, which result in change the menopause female’s set point in the hypothalamus from 37 to 5 or 6 grades higher, so the body feel cold and hypothalamus starts to send messages to the body to make it’s temperature higher and that message sent by special neurotransmitters , mainly adrenaline and nor adrenaline , also prostaglandin’s and serotonin , that lead to these annoying flashes ,and it’s consequences which is mainly on the heart and skin
Heart start to pump faster, to increase it’s blood out put, and so the heart rate increase , that explain the accompanied tachycardia or increase heart beating, Skin on skin blood vessels , dilatation of them as it is away to cool the body after that stimulation had gone , leave the body red and that explain the flush (redness coloration) occur after the flashes. Second on skin sweat glands, It become hyper stimulated, that lead to increase sweat production, also to cool the body , that also explain the sweats accompanied with hot flashes.
Other Hot flashes causes There are other causes that lead also to hot flashes, rather than what occur in the natural menopause , these causes may be diseases or even drug side effects .
Most common diseases causing hot flashes
- Panic disorder
- Thyroid diseases
- Medication causing hot flashes , such as Raloxfiene ( osteoporosis medication ) , Tamoxfien ( anti estrogenic drug , used mainly in endometrial carcinoma ) , Gondotropin analogues ( female infertility for ovulation induction )
Hot flashes symptoms
Menopause hot flashes characterized by coming in episodes , each episode characterized by being sudden and intense in which the female feel hot mainly in her face, and upper body also in some times that hotness involve whole body , it accompanied mainly by, Tachycardia ( rapid regular or irregular heart beating ) , palpitation ( awareness of heart beating ), followed by Flushes ( redness in the body mainly in face and upper body , and ended by cold chills . Hot flashes may lead to sleep disturbances , as these episodes comes usually at night , it also may lead to Dizziness, Headache, Anxiety and feel of suffocation . Most women experiencing mild to moderate episodes ,that is mainly depend on the amount of estrogen reduction, which vary from woman to another one Mild hot flashes episodes, occur mainly in muscular heavy women, rather than thin women , that is because of the great availability of muscle and fat cells, as in these cells there is a conversion of understanding secreted by adrenal gland to estrone which is a weak, long effective estrogen like hormone.
In other hand some women facing severe episode of hot flashes, which can occur due to unknown cause, but it mainly seen if there are other associating causes lead to more estrogen reduction as in cases of
- Breast cancer
- Women who take tamoxifen ( as multiple studies shows that about 75% of females who take tamoxifen face a severe hot flashes , comparing to 20-25% who take placebo , but it can improve after first three or six months
- Surgical menopause : due to rapid reduction of estrogen level
- Medical menopause: especially chemotherapy induce medical menopause, can lead to intense severe episode that may lead to heart attack.
- Smoking : as smoking decrease ability of the blood vessels to radiate heat and that lead to decrease heat loss and lead to more severe hot flashes.