This site uses cookies to measure how you use the website so it can be updated and improved based on your needs and also uses cookies to help remember the notifications you’ve seen, like this one, so that we don’t show them to you again. If you could also tell us a little bit about yourself, this information will help us understand how we can support you better and make this site even easier for you to use and navigate.

Hormone levels and cognitive function in postmenopausal midlife women


Ryan, Joanne, Stanczyk, Frank Z., Dennerstein, Lorraine, Mack, Wendy J., Clark, Margaret S., Szoeke, Cassandra, Kildea, Daniel, Henderson, Victor W.


Neurobiology Of Aging, Volume: 33, No.: 3, Pages.: 617.e11-22

Year of Publication



Gonadal hormones may influence cognitive function. Postmenopausal midlife women in the population-based Melbourne Women’s Midlife Health Project cohort were administered a comprehensive battery of neuropsychological tests on two occasions 2 years apart. Participants (n = 148, mean age 60 years) had undergone natural menopause and were not using hormone therapy. Estrone, total and free estradiol, and total and free testosterone levels were measured at time of the first testing. Principal-component analysis identified four cognitive factors. In multiple linear regression analyses, better semantic memory performance was associated with higher total (p = 0.02) and free (p = 0.03) estradiol levels and a lower ratio of testosterone to estradiol (p = 0.007). There were trends for associations between better verbal episodic memory and lower total testosterone (p = 0.08) and lower testosterone/estradiol ratio (p = 0.06). Lower free testosterone levels were associated with greater 2-year improvement on verbal episodic memory (p = 0.04); higher testosterone/estradiol predicted greater semantic memory improvement (p = 0.03). In postmenopausal midlife women, endogenous estradiol and testosterone levels and the testosterone/estradiol ratio are associated with semantic memory and verbal episodic memory abilities.; Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Bibtex Citation

@article{Ryan_2012, doi = {10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2010.07.014}, url = {}, year = 2012, month = {mar}, publisher = {Elsevier {BV}}, volume = {33}, number = {3}, pages = {617.e11--617.e22}, author = {Joanne Ryan and Frank Z. Stanczyk and Lorraine Dennerstein and Wendy J. Mack and Margaret S. Clark and Cassandra Szoeke and Daniel Kildea and Victor W. Henderson}, title = {Hormone levels and cognitive function in postmenopausal midlife women}, journal = {Neurobiology of Aging} }


biological markers, blood, cognition, crosssectional studies, dementia, epidemiology, estradiol, estrone, female, humans, longitudinal studies, memory, menopausal, metabolism, middle aged, neuropsychological tests, physiology, post, postmenopause, risk factors, sex hormonebinding globulin, testosterone, verbal learning, women

Countries of Study


Types of Dementia

Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI)

Types of Study

Cohort Study, Epidemiological

Type of Outcomes


Type of Interventions

Risk Factor Modification

Risk Factor Modifications

At risk population