Women who suffer from polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), one of the most common causes of female infertility in the U.S., have an increased chance of developing cardiovascular disease, according to a new study published this month in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, published by The Endocrine Society. The findings also report that the metabolic syndrome is more prevalent in women with PCOS, and that women with both conditions would exhibit more hormonal and menstrual cycle irregularity than women with PCOS only.
It is estimated that five to 10 percent of reproductive aged women sufferfrom PCOS. While there is no actual cure for PCOS, researchers are working toidentify effective treatments as well as possible causes for the condition.”Our study highlights the relationship between PCOS, metabolic syndrome andcardiovascular disease,” explained senior author, Dr. John Nestler, Professorof Medicine; Chair, Division of Endocrinology & Metabolism and Vice Chair,Department of Internal Medicine at the Medical College of Virginia, VirginiaCommonwealth University. “These findings indicate that women with PCOS shouldautomatically be screened for the metabolic syndrome, to prevent the risk ofearly-onset cardiovascular disease.” After reviewing medical charts for 161 women, study investigatorsidentified 106 women (46 women with PCOS and the metabolic syndrome; 60 womenwith PCOS alone) for participation and analysis. The study revealed thatwomen with PCOS are nearly two times as likely to have the metabolic syndromein comparison with women without PCOS in the general population. Womendemonstrating characteristics of both PCOS and the metabolic syndrome werefound to also have more severe insulin resistance.The researchers concluded that the metabolic syndrome and its relatedconditions are common in women with PCOS, putting these women at even greaterincreased risk for developing cardiovascular disease.(Source: Newswire Health, April 2005)