Ultrasonographic and laboratory markers of metabolic and cardiovascular disease risk in obese women with polycystic ovary syndrome

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Abstract

Objective

To evaluate whether the presence of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) alters multiple ultrasonographic and laboratory markers of metabolic and cardiovascular disease risk in obese women without any other health condition that could interfere with combined oral contraceptive (COC) eligibility criteria.

Methods

This was a case–control study evaluating 90 obese women (body mass index (BMI) ≥ 30.0 kg/m2 and < 40 kg/m2) aged between 18 and 40 years without any other health condition that could interfere with COC eligibility criteria, of whom 45 had PCOS and 45 were age-matched controls. BMI, waist and hip circumference, arterial blood pressure, fasting insulin and glucose, quantitative insulin sensitivity check index (QUICKI), high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, total cholesterol, triglycerides, testosterone, sex hormone-binding globulin, free androgen index (FAI), carotid stiffness index, intima media thickness, flow-mediated dilatation (FMD) of the brachial artery and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) were assessed.

Results

In women with PCOS, we observed a higher frequency of NAFLD (73.3 vs. 46.7%, P < 0.01) and higher FAI (10.4 vs. 6.8%, P < 0.01). We also observed a trend towards increased insulin levels (10.06 ± 6.66 vs. 7.45 ± 5.88 μIU/mL, P = 0.05), decreased QUICKI (0.36 ± 0.06 vs. 0.39 ± 0.07, P = 0.05) and decreased FMD (7.00 ± 3.87 vs. 8.41 ± 3.79%, P = 0.08). No other significant difference was observed.

Conclusions

NAFLD is frequent in obese women without any other health condition that could interfere with COC eligibility criteria, especially in those with PCOS. This should be considered when choosing the best contraceptive option. Copyright © 2012 ISUOG. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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