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Gender

  • Toshio HayashiEmail author
Chapter
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Abstract

In all age groups from childhood to old age, women have a longer average life expectancy than men, suggesting that sex (specifically, sex hormones) is closely related to geriatric diseases and aging. Disease structure changes as people age, with cardiovascular disease increasing dramatically in late elderly (older than 75 years of age) females and arteriosclerotic diseases surpassing malignancies as the leading cause of death. After menopause, however, this number increases dramatically, thus reducing the gender gap. The prevalence of cardiovascular disease in women aged 75 years or older is thus equal to that of men of the same age. As this age group has a greater population of females than males, women account for a greater number of cardiovascular disease cases. We will discuss recent knowledge, including the gender differences apparent in risk factors such as dyslipidemia and hypertension. Cardiovascular disease is a typical geriatric disease, and pathological aging contributes to estrogen action and sex differences in atherosclerosis.

Women have a longer average life expectancy than men, and sex hormones, especially estrogen, is closely related to geriatric diseases and aging. Disease structure changes as people age, with cardiovascular disease increasing dramatically in late elderly females and arteriosclerotic diseases surpassing malignancies as the leading cause of death. Although hormone replacement therapy for all postmenopausal women as one same dose of agents failed to prevent cardiovascular disease in elderly female, recent advance of basic and clinical gender-specific medical research made clear the molecular mechanism on the gender differences in cardiovascular diseases and coronary risk factors such as dyslipidemia. Cardiovascular disease is a typical geriatric disease, and pathological aging contributes to estrogen action and sex differences in atherosclerosis, which form the main etiology of cardiovascular disease. These gender-dependent differences in risk are important for an individualized strategy to prevent atherosclerotic disease.

Keywords

Estrogen Nitric oxide Selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERM) Gender-based medicine Hormone replacement therapy 

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© Springer-Verlag Wien 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of GeriatricsNagoya University Graduate School of MedicineNagoyaJapan

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