Association between polycystic ovary syndrome and hot flash presentation during the midlife period

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Abstract

Objective:

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is the most common endocrinopathy in reproductive-aged women; however, the impact of PCOS on menopausal symptoms remains poorly understood. This study aims to determine the influence of PCOS on hot flash presentation in midlife women.

Methods:

Participants were recruited from the Midlife Women's Health Study involving 780 women aged 45 to 54 years. All women completed detailed questionnaires on hot flash symptoms. Between June 2014 and March 2015, participants were screened for history of PCOS based on the Rotterdam criteria. Fisher's exact tests and Wilcoxon rank-sum tests were used for analysis. Multivariate logistic regression was performed to identify factors associated with hot flashes at midlife.

Results:

In all, 453 women (69%) consented to the telephone interview and 9.3% (n = 42) met diagnostic criteria for PCOS; 411 were included as controls. Mean age was 48.0 and body mass index was 27.3 for women with PCOS. The majority of participants were white (72%). There was no difference between PCOS and control women for levels of follicle-stimulating hormone, testosterone, progesterone, or estradiol. Multivariate logistic regression demonstrated that PCOS was not associated with increased odds of hot flash incidence. Smoking was the only variable associated with experiencing hot flashes (odds ratio 2.0, 95% confidence interval 1.05-3.98).

Conclusions:

A history of PCOS was not associated with increased hot flash symptoms during the midlife period. Additional research should continue to investigate the health and quality of life associated with a history of PCOS in the aging population.

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