Sex Hormones and Cognition: Where Do We Stand?

Abstract

Hypothalamic–pituitary–gonadal axis regulates the reproductive system. The overall health and wellbeing of a woman is subject to fluctuations in the sex hormones throughout her lifespan. Menopause, either natural or surgically induced, is often associated with cognitive complaints, especially memory disturbances. Sex hormones, besides affecting the reproductive function, affect the central nervous system in many ways. Here, we aim to review the role of sex hormones in cognition and the current evidence on use of or against menopausal hormonal therapy as a cognition enhancer in women with cognitive disturbances, including those with Alzheimer’s disease.

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SVK and VAP were involved in literature research, manuscript preparation, manuscript editing and revision. Both the authors have read the manuscript and approved the final version.

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Correspondence to Satish V. Khadilkar MD, DM, DNBE, FIAN, FICP, FAMS, FRCP (London).

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Dr Satish V. Khadilkar is presently the Dean and Professor and Head at the Department Neurology at the Bombay Hospital Institute of Medical Sciences, Mumbai. Dr Varsha A. Patil is Clinical Associate, Neurology at Department Neurology at the Bombay Hospital Institute of Medical Sciences, Mumbai.

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Khadilkar, S.V., Patil, V.A. Sex Hormones and Cognition: Where Do We Stand?. J Obstet Gynecol India 69, 303–312 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s13224-019-01223-5

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Keywords

  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Cognition
  • Dementia
  • Estrogen
  • Estradiol
  • Hormone therapy
  • Menopausal hormonal therapy
  • Memory
  • Sex hormones