To examine the influence of chronic hormone replacement therapy (HRT) on the central and peripheral cardiovascular responses of postmenopausal women to direct passive heating, seven women taking estrogen replacement therapy, seven women taking estrogen and progesterone therapy, and seven women not taking HRT were passively heated with water-perfused suits to their individual limit of thermal tolerance. Measurements included heart rate (HR), cardiac output, blood pressure, skin blood flow, splanchnic blood flow, renal blood flow, esophageal temperature, and mean skin temperature. Cardiac output was higher in women taking estrogen and progesterone therapy than in women not taking HRT (7.12 ± 0.70 vs. 5.02 ± 0.57 l/min at the limit of thermal tolerance, respectively; P < 0.05) because of a higher HR. However, when the HR data were plotted as a percentage of the maximum HR or percentage of HR reserve, there were no differences among the three groups of women. Neither splanchnic nor renal blood flow differed among the groups of women. These data suggest that HRT has little effect on the cardiovascular responses to direct passive heating.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Physiology (medical)