Background The previous studies regarding the association between endogenous dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) sulphate level and metabolic syndrome are inconsistent. This study aimed to investigate such relationship in elderly Taiwanese men. Materials and methods Five hundred and eighty-five elderly Taiwanese men (mean age 68·7 ± 8·3 years) were enrolled as the baseline cohort population in 2000. In addition to a questionnaire, body mass index (BMI), blood pressure, fasting blood glucose, lipids, albumin and serum DHEA-S levels were measured for each participant. Metabolic syndrome was based on the definition by the America Heart Association/National Heart Lung Blood Institute. Results The prevalence of metabolic syndrome was 33·3%. Using multivariate logistic regression analyses with adjustments for age, smoking, alcohol, physical activities, albumin and BMI, there was a positive relationship between serum DHEA-S level and metabolic syndrome. The highest DHEA-S quartile group had increased risk for metabolic syndrome (odds ratio = 2·68, 95% confidence interval: 1·44-5·01, P < 0·01) compared with the lowest quartile group. The mean serum DHEA-S level increased with increasing number of metabolic syndrome components. Conclusions The prevalence of metabolic syndrome increases with elevated DHEA-S levels among elderly Taiwanese men. Thus, elevated serum DHEA-S level should be treated as an important risk factor for metabolic syndrome in elderly men.
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