Endometriosis Linked to Heart Disease Risk In Young Women

Women aged 40 years and younger who have endometriosis are 3 times more likely to develop coronary heart disease than healthy women in that age range, according to new research.

This is the first prospective study to investigate how endometriosis impacts coronary heart disease in women.

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To conduct their study, researchers examined 116,430 women enrolled in the Nurses’ Health Study II from 1989 to 2009 and performed a laparoscopy to confirm endometriosis.

After a 20-year follow-up, researchers confirmed that 11,903 women had endometriosis. Those women were 1.91 times more likely to have angina, 1.52 times more likely to have a heart attack, and 1.35 times more likely to need coronary surgery or a stent procedure.

Women aged 40 years and younger were at the highest risk: 3 times more likely than their healthy counterparts to have angina, heart attacks, or surgery for blocked arteries.

In addition, women who had their uterus or ovaries removed had an even higher risk of developing heart disease.

“In this large, prospective cohort, laparoscopically confirmed endometriosis was associated with increased risk of coronary heart disease,” researchers concluded. “The association was strongest among young women. Hysterectomy/oophorectomy was associated with higher risk of coronary heart disease and could partially explain the association between endometriosis and coronary heart disease.”

—Amanda Balbi


Mu F, Rich-Edwards J, Rimm EB, Spiegelman D, Missmer SA. Endometriosis and risk of coronary heart disease [published online March 29, 2016]. Circ Cardiovasc Qual Outcomes. doi:10.1161/CIRCOUTCOMES.115.002224.