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14-11-2010 | Gynaecology | Article

Age at menopause and ethnicity affect skin wrinkling


Journal abstract

MedWire News: Age at menopause and race can significantly affect skin wrinkling, show the results of a US study involving recently menopausal women.

Facial wrinkle scores were significantly lower among black women than among non-black participants of the study at all facial locations except the neck, say Hugh Taylor from Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut, and colleagues.

In contrast, while there was a positive association between age and increasing wrinkle score, this effect was most notable among white women.

"Ethnic differences in skin characteristics are widely accepted, but poorly described," say Taylor et al, noting that the effects of estrogen on senile skin are well-documented.

The study included 21 black, 65 white, and 16 women of other ethnicities whose skin wrinkles and rigidity were assessed at various sites at the face and neck.

Total wrinkle scores were lower in the black women than among all women of other races, at 11.3 versus 19.0 on the Lemperle scale, a measure of wrinkle severity.

Overall, skin rigidity did not differ among ethnicity or age, but forehead rigidity and total rigidity score were associated with time since menopause among white women.

"Compared to skin wrinkles, skin rigidity appears more sensitive to hormonal status (ie, time since menopause) rather than chronological age," conclude the researchers.

MedWire ( is an independent clinical news service provided by Current Medicine Group, a trading division of Springer Healthcare Limited. © Springer Healthcare Ltd; 2010

By Sarah Guy