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Hot Flashes and Menopause (cont.)

Hot Flashes Causes

The exact cause of the hot flashes is not fully understood, but the declining estrogen levels that occur as a woman approaches menopause are thought to play a role. A disorder in thermoregulation (methods the body uses to control and regulate body temperature) is responsible for the sensation of heat, but the exact way in which hormone levels affect heat regulation is not well understood.

While hot flashes are typically associated with the menopause in women, certain uncommon medical conditions can also lead to hot flashes and disorders of the body's ability to regulate temperature. One example is the carcinoid syndrome, which occurs due to a type of endocrine tumor that secretes large amounts of the hormone serotonin. Hot flashes can also develop as a side effect of some medications and can sometimes occur in association with severe infections or cancers.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/23/2014

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