UMMS Affiliation

Department of Medicine, Division of Preventive And Behavioral Medicine; Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Publication Date


Document Type



Female Urogenital Diseases and Pregnancy Complications | Neoplasms | Obstetrics and Gynecology | Women's Health


PURPOSE: We compared trajectories of vasomotor symptoms (VMS) and their risk factors in women with breast cancer (BrCa) to those of cancer-free controls.

METHODS: Data were from 15 nearly annual follow-up visits (1996-2017) of the multi-racial/ethnic cohort of midlife women enrolled in the Study of Women's Health Across the Nation (SWAN). We compared women with incident BrCa to controls for patterns of VMS, controlling for risk factors identified in bivariate analyses using multivariable longitudinal analyses.

RESULTS: Characteristics at study entry largely did not differ between cases (n = 151) and controls (n = 2161). Adjusted prevalence of any VMS increased significantly among cases from diagnosis to 2.75 years post diagnosis [per-year adjusted odds ratio (aOR) = 1.76, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.39-2.24], peaking at 2.75 years post diagnosis, whereas prevalence was stable among controls in this interval [aOR = 1.04, 95% CI 0.99-1.11]. Beyond 2.75 years post diagnosis, prevalence declined significantly in cases [aOR = 0.72, 95% CI 0.61-0.84] and less in controls [aOR = 0.96, 95% CI 0.92-1.00]. Patterns were similar for frequent VMS. Adjustment for tamoxifen use slightly reduced the per-year OR for any prevalent VMS post diagnosis, partially explaining excess VMS in cases. Other treatments were unassociated with VMS.

CONCLUSIONS: Patterns of prevalent VMS reporting differed significantly between cases and controls, particularly post diagnosis, the latter only partially explained by tamoxifen use among cases. Risk factors for VMS largely did not differ between cases and controls.


Breast cancer, Menopause, Risk factors, Vasomotor symptoms

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Copyright © The Author(s) 2021. Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit

DOI of Published Version



Gold EB, Crawford SL, Leung K, Greendale G, Reeves KW, Joffe H, Avis NE. Vasomotor symptoms in midlife women with incident breast cancer: pink SWAN. Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2022 Jan;191(1):125-135. doi: 10.1007/s10549-021-06425-y. Epub 2021 Oct 25. PMID: 34694536; PMCID: PMC8758653. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Breast cancer research and treatment

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Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.