“Women often describe a hot flush as a creeping feeling of intense warmth that quickly spreads across your whole body and face. It typically lasts for several minutes”.1

Umbrella
What may the Hot Flushes Umbrella include?

Depending on the Source (DotS) this Umbrella may include:

  • Hot Flash
  • Hot Flashes
  • Hot Flush (HF)
  • Hot Flushes
  • Menopausal/Menopause Hot Flashes/Hot Flushes
  • Menopause-Related Hot Flashes/Hot Flushes
  • Vasomotor Symptoms
  • “Power Surges”

Different Differences

What is the difference between a hot flush and a hot flash?

I am guessing the difference between these two hotties is that DotS and/or DotC (Depending on the Country). It would appear women in the United States and Canada have hot flashes and women in other countries have hot flushes. Or not.

Vasomotor Symptoms

What are vasomotor symptoms (VMS)?

DotS the definition of vasomotor symptoms may vary. The North American Menopause Society’s definition is:

Vasomotor symptoms. Also known as hot flashes and night sweats, common symptoms during perimenopause and early postmenopause”.2

Hot Flush

What is a hot flush?

The Australasian Menopause Society’s (AMS) definition is:

“A hot flush is a sensation of heat involving the whole body and may be associated with redness and sweating”.3

Hot Flush Description

How may women describe a hot flush?

In Menopause: Hot Flushes the (United Kingdom) NHS explain:

Hot Flushes

“Women often describe a hot flush as a creeping feeling of intense warmth that quickly spreads across your whole body and face.

It typically lasts for several minutes. Others say the warmth is similar to the sensation of being under a sun bed, or feeling like a furnace”.4

Hot Flash

What is a hot flash?

DotS the definition of a hot flash may vary. In Hot Flashes: Symptoms & Causes – Overview the (United States) Mayo Clinic’s definition is:

“A hot flash is the sudden feeling of warmth in the upper body, which is usually most intense over the face, neck and chest. Your skin might redden, as if you’re blushing. A hot flash can also cause sweating. If you lose too much body heat, you might feel chilled afterward. Night sweats are hot flashes that happen at night, and they may disrupt your sleep”.5

Night Sweats

What are night sweats?

DotS the definition of night sweats may vary. In Hot Flashes: Symptoms & Causes – Overview the Mayo Clinic’s definition is:

“Night sweats are hot flashes that happen at night, and they may disrupt your sleep”.6

The NAMS’ definition is:

“Hot flashes often occur during sleep, producing intense perspiration known as night sweats”.7

Cause

What is the cause of hot flushes?

In Menopause FAQs: Hot Flashes – Q. What Are Hot Flashes? What Causes Them To Happen? according to the NAMS:

“Although their exact cause still isn’t fully understood, hot flashes are thought to be the result of changes in the hypothalamus, the part of the brain that regulates the body’s temperature. If the hypothalamus senses that a woman is too warm, it starts a chain of events to cool her down. Blood vessels near the surface of the skin begin to dilate (enlarge), increasing blood flow to the surface in an attempt to dissipate body heat. This produces a red, flushed look to the face and neck in light-skinned women. It may also make a woman perspire to cool the body down. Women may sense their hearts beating faster. A cold chill often follows a hot flash. A few women experience only the chill”.8

In Symptoms of Menopause: Hot Flushes & Night Sweats the (Australian) Jean Hailes for Women’s Health note:

“The causes of hot flushes are complex and not completely understood. It seems lower oestrogen levels affect parts of the brain that provide the thermostat for body temperature. Many studies show stress and anxiety can influence the frequency and intensity of hot flushes and sometimes certain foods or alcohol can also have an impact”.9

Other Causes: Other Conditions

Apart from menopause, what are other causes of hot flushes?

In NonHormonal Treatments for Menopausal Symptoms: Hot Flashes and Night Sweats (Vasomotor Symptoms) the AMS explain causes can include:

  • Other conditions. Not all hot flushes are due to menopause. Other associated conditions include thyroid disease, diabetes, hyperhidrosis (a condition of excessive sweating which affects 1% of people), anxiety and panic disorders, obesity, hormonally active tumors, chronic infections and neurological disorders”.10

Other Causes: Medications

What medications can cause hot flushes?

According to the AMS:

  • “Medications. Some medicines can cause hot flushes or make them worse. These include anti-oestrogens: tamoxifen , aromatase inhibitors, toremifene , raloxifene and clomiphene and the gonadotrophin-releasing hormone analogues i.e. goserelin, leuprorelin and nafarelin1. Some non-hormonal treatments for hot flushes, such as venlafaxine, can also cause hot flushes at higher doses”.11

Common or Not

How common are hot flushes?

In the United States, according to the NAMS:

“Hot flashes are reported by as many as 75% of perimenopausal women in the United States”.12

Impact

What impact may hot flushes have?

In Hot Flashes: Symptoms & Causes – Complications the Mayo Clinic note:

“Hot flashes may impact your daily activities and quality of life. Nighttime hot flashes (night sweats) can wake you from sleep and, over time, can cause long-term sleep disruptions.

Heart Disease and Bone Loss

May hot flushes impact risk of heart disease and greater bone loss?

In Hot Flashes: Symptoms & Causes – Complications the Mayo Clinic also note:

Research suggests that women who have hot flashes may have an increased risk of heart disease and greater bone loss than women who do not have hot flashes”.13

Lifestyle Changes

What are some lifestyle changes to improve hot flushes?

In Hot Flashes: What Can I Do? Lifestyle Changes To Improve Hot Flashes the (United States) National Institute on Aging elaborate on:

  • “Dress in layers, which can be removed at the start of a hot flash
  • Carry a portable fan to use when a hot flash strikes
  • Avoid alcohol, spicy foods, and caffeine. These can make menopausal symptoms worse
  • If you smoke, try to quit, not only for menopausal symptoms, but for your overall health
  • Try to maintain a healthy weight. Women who are overweight or obese may experience more frequent and severe hot flashes
  • Try mind-body practices like yoga or other self-calming techniques. Early-stage research has shown that mindfulness meditation, yoga, and tai chi may help improve menopausal symptoms”.14

Hormone Replacement Therapy

Is hormone replacement therapy an effective treatment for hot flushes?

In Menopause: Hot Flushes – Treatments for Hot Flushes the NHS explain:

“The most effective treatment for hot flushes is hormone replacement therapy (HRT), which usually completely gets rid of them. Your doctor will talk to you about the benefits and risks of using HRT”.15

Revised Global Consensus Statement

What is one of the points of consensus about menopausal hormone therapy (MHT)?

One of the points of consensus in the Revised Global Consensus Statement on Menopausal Hormone Therapy: Section A: Benefit/Risk Profile of MHT – endorsed by seven menopause-related organizations – published online 20 June 2016, is:

“MHT, including tibolone and the combination of conju-gated equine estrogens and bazedoxifene (CE/BZA), is the most effective treatment for vasomotor symptoms (VMS) associated with menopause at any age, but benefits are more likely to outweigh risks if initiated for symptomatic women before the age of 60 years or within 10 years after menopause”.16

Stop

When do hot flushes stop?

In Menopause FAQs: Hot Flashes – Q. How long will I have hot flashes? the NAMS explain:

“A. Most women experience hot flashes for 6 months to 2 years, although some reports suggest that they last considerably longer—as long as 10 years, depending on when they began. For a small proportion of women, they may never go away. It is not uncommon for women to experience a recurrence of hot flashes more than 10 years after menopause, even into their 70s or beyond. There is no reliable way of predicting when they will start—or stop”.17

Health Care Provider

What if I would like help with my hot flushes?

If you would like help with your hot flushes, it may be in your best interest to choose to talk to your health care provider about this.

In Hot Flashes: Diagnosis & Treatment – Treatment the Mayo Clinic elaborate on:

“Discuss the pros and cons of various treatments with your doctor. If hot flashes don’t interfere with your life, you probably don’t need treatment. Hot flashes subside gradually for most women, even without treatment, but it can take several years for them to stop”.18

In 4 Things To Know About Menopausal Symptoms and Complementary Health Practices. 4 the (United States) National Center for Complimentary and Integrative Health remind us:

“Tell all your health care providers about any complementary health practices you use. Give them a full picture of what you do to manage your health. This will help ensure coordinated and safe care”.19

Health Topics A-Z

Where may I find Health Topics related to Hot Flushes?

In Health Topics A-Z you may find:

Links

Where may I find Links related to Hot Flushes?

Your Country may have Links similar to:

Sources

Where may I find the Sources quoted?

You may find the Sources quoted at:

Sources

  1. Menopause: Hot Flushes – Treatments for Hot Flushes. Page Last Reviewed: 29 August 2018. NHS https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/menopause/hot-flushes/ Accessed: 06 August 2021
  2. Glossary: V – Vasomotor Symptoms. North American Menopause Society http://www.menopause.org/for-women/menopause-glossary#V Accessed: 06 August 2021
  3. NonHormonal Treatments for Menopausal Symptoms: Hot Flashes and Night Sweats (Vasomotor Symptoms). Content Updated September 2018. Australasian Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org.au/hp/information-sheets/600-nonhormonal-treatments-for-menopausal-symptoms Accessed: 06 August 2021
  4. Menopause: Hot Flushes – Treatments for Hot Flushes. Page Last Reviewed: 29 August 2018. NHS https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/menopause/hot-flushes/ Accessed: 06 August 2021
  5. Hot Flashes: Symptoms & Causes – Overview. 24 April 2020. Mayo Clinic https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/hot-flashes/symptoms-causes/syc-20352790 Accessed: 06 August 2021
  6. Hot Flashes: Symptoms & Causes – Overview. 24 April 2020. Mayo Clinic https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/hot-flashes/symptoms-causes/syc-20352790 Accessed: 06 August 2021
  7. Hot Flashes. North American Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org/for-women/sexual-health-menopause-online/causes-of-sexual-problems/hot-flashes Accessed: 06 August 2021
  8. Menopause FAQs: Hot Flashes – Q. What Are Hot Flashes? What Causes Them To Happen? North American Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org/for-women/menopause-faqs-hot-flashes Accessed: 06 August 2021
  9. Symptoms of Menopause: Hot Flushes & Night Sweats. Last Updated: 24 March 2021 | Last Reviewed: 17 December 2017. Jean Hailes for Women’s Health https://jeanhailes.org.au/health-a-z/menopause/menopause-symptoms/ Accessed: 06 August 2021
  10. NonHormonal Treatments for Menopausal Symptoms: Hot Flashes and Night Sweats (Vasomotor Symptoms). Content Updated September 2018. Australasian Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org.au/hp/information-sheets/600-nonhormonal-treatments-for-menopausal-symptoms Accessed: 06 August 2021
  11. NonHormonal Treatments for Menopausal Symptoms: Hot Flashes and Night Sweats (Vasomotor Symptoms). Content Updated September 2018. Australasian Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org.au/hp/information-sheets/600-nonhormonal-treatments-for-menopausal-symptoms Accessed: 06 August 2021
  12. Hot Flashes. North American Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org/for-women/sexual-health-menopause-online/causes-of-sexual-problems/hot-flashes Accessed: 06 August 2021
  13. Hot Flashes: Symptoms & Causes – Complications. 24 April 2020. Mayo Clinic https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/hot-flashes/symptoms-causes/syc-20352790 Accessed: 06 August 2021
  14. Hot Flashes: What Can I Do? Lifestyle Changes To Improve Hot Flashes. Content Reviewed: 26 June 2017. National Institute on Aging https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/hot-flashes-what-can-i-do Accessed: 06 August 2021
  15. Menopause: Hot Flushes – Treatments for Hot Flushes. Page Last Reviewed: 29 August 2018. NHS https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/menopause/hot-flushes/ Accessed: 06 August 2021
  16. De Villiers, T. J., Hall, J. E., Pinkerton, J. V., Pérez, S. C., Rees, M., Yang, C. and Pierroz, D. D. Revised Global Consensus Statement on Menopausal Hormone Therapy: Section A: Benefit/Risk Profile of MHT. Climacteric, 2016;19:4:313 https://www.imsociety.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/global-consensus-hrt-2016-06.pdf Accessed: 06 August 2021
  17. Menopause FAQs: Hot Flashes – Q. How long will I have hot flashes? North American Menopause Society https://www.menopause.org/for-women/menopause-faqs-hot-flashes Accessed: 06 August 2021
  18. Hot Flashes: Diagnosis & Treatment – Treatment. 24 April 2020. Mayo Clinic https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/hot-flashes/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20352795 Accessed: 06 August 2021
  19. 4 Things To Know About Menopausal Symptoms and Complementary Health Practices. National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/tips/things-to-know-about-menopausal-symptoms-and-complementary-health-practices Accessed: 06 August 2021

Topic Last Updated: 12 October 2021 – Topic Last Reviewed: 06 August 2021
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