Associations between lifetime tobacco exposure with infertility and age at natural menopause: the Women’s Health Initiative Observational Study (Tobacco Control Journal)
On December 16, 2015, an observational study was published in Tobacco Control Journal on associations between lifetime tobacco exposure with infertility and age at natural menopause. Several studies have researched the association of tobacco use with infertility and age at natural menopause , however few have explored second hand smoke (SHS) exposure outcomes. The goal of this study was to offer a comprehensive, quantified secondary data analysis of these issues using the Women’s Health Initiative Observational Study (WHI OS).
Information on smoking, lifetime fertility status, and age at natural menopause was collected and available from 93 676 postmenopausal women aged 50–79 enrolled in the WHI OS from 1993 to 1998 at 40 centres in the USA. Multivariate-adjusted regression models were used to estimate ORs and 95% CI according to levels of active smoking and SHS exposure, and trends were tested across categories.
Active-ever smokers reached menopause 21.7 months earlier than the mean of 49.4 years for never-smokers not exposed to SHS, and women exposed to the highest level of SHS reached menopause 13.0 months earlier.
Conclusion: Active smoking and SHS exposure are associated with increased risk of infertility and natural menopause occurring before the age of 50 years.