Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is an extremely common disorder in women of reproductive age. Diagnosis of PCOS is principally based on clinical and physical findings. Diagnostic criteria and PCOS definitions used by clinicians and researchers are almost as heterogeneous as the syndrome. Of those diagnosed with PCOS using the 2003 Rotterdam criteria, 61% fulfilled the 1990 National Institutes of Health criteria for unexplained hyperandrogenic chronic anovulation. Patient populations with the new phenotypes have less severe ovulatory dysfunction and less androgen excess than patients diagnosed using the 1990 National Institutes of Health criteria. These findings might be common across all female populations with PCOS, in Asian or Western countries. Data for clinical hyperandrogenism indicates that the prevalence of hirsutism in Taiwanese PCOS women is lower than that for Caucasian/Western women. The extent of metabolic abnormalities in women with PCOS may vary with phenotype, age and ethnicity. Obesity represents a major risk factor for metabolic syndrome and insulin resistance. Approximately 40-50% of all women with PCOS are overweight or obese. Obese subjects with PCOS have a higher risk of developing oligomenorrhea, amenorrhea and biochemical hyperandrogenemia than non-obese women with PCOS. Moreover, obese women with PCOS have significantly more severe insulin resistance, lower serum luteinizing hormone levels, and lower luteinizing hormone to follicle-stimulating hormone ratios than those of non-obese women with PCOS. PCOS women in Taiwan have a higher luteinizing hormone to follicle-stimulating hormone ratio and lower insulin resistance than those in PCOS women in Western countries. However, the average body mass index is significantly lower in Taiwanese PCOS women than in Western women, which might partially explain the difference between these two populations in terms of clinical and biochemical presentations. To further document the ethnic variation between women with PCOS in Taiwan and Western countries, future studies should pay attention to the effect of obesity on the diagnosis and clinical presentations of PCOS-related syndromes.
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Journal of Experimental and Clinical Medicine(Taiwan)|
|Publication status||Published - Oct 2010|
- Polycystic ovary syndrome
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