Obesity and metabolic syndrome during the menopausal transition of women in Serbia
Teodora Beljic Zivkovic1, Marina Andjelic Jelic1, Jelena Stojanovic1, Miljanka Vuksanovic1, Bogdan Buric1, Biljana Jojic1, Natasa Milic2 & Milena Lazarevic3
Abdominal obesity and metabolic syndrome are known to increase in prevalence from premenopause to postmenopause in women. Both are well recognized predictors of cardiovascular disease and diabetes in women.
The objective of this study was to assess the presence of obesity and metabolic syndrome during the menopausal transition in women from Serbia.
Methods: Our results present a part of the National epidemiological cross-sectional study (SEMINAR) that assessed the presence of cardiovascular disease and diabetes in Serbia. We evaluated the presence of obesity and metabolic syndrome in 1076 women attending six primary and 14 secondary health care centers in Serbia. Women were divided into 4 groups: premenopausal 3545 years (n=95), perimenopausal 4650 years (n=105), early postmenopausal 5155 years (n=176) and late postmenopausal 5680 years (n=700). Endocrinologists evaluated 40%, cardiologists 26% and general practitioners 34% of women. Blood glucose, lipids, blood pressure and waist circumference were registered.
Results: Waist circumference over 80 cm was present in 66.3% of premenopausal, 81% of perimenopausal, 81.8% of early and 88.2% of late postmenopausal women (P<0.01 premenopausal to other groups). The mean waist circumference of all women was 92 cm. Mean body mass index (BMI) was 28.5 kg/m2. Premenopausal women had a BMI of 26.9±5.7 kg/m2. It was significantly smaller than the BMI of women in other groups (perimenopausal 28.8±5.6, P<0.05; early 28.6±5.2, P<0.05 and late postmenopausal 31.9±5.7 kg/m2, P<0.0001). Metabolic syndrome was present in 72% of women with a significant difference between premenopausal and other groups (P<0.004). In all, 57.9% of premenopausal, 75.2% of perimenopausal, 77.8% of early and 87.1% of late postmenopausal women had metabolic syndrome.
Conclusion: Women in Serbia that go to doctors mostly have abdominal obesity and metabolic syndrome. The prevalence of obesity and metabolic syndrome significantly increases in the age group 4650 years. This points to perimenopause as the period of life when preventive measures for diabetes and cardiovascular disease should be undertaken in women.