Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is an endocrine disorder with a pathogenesis in which hormonal and metabolic disturbances have been considered. There is evidence of a familial aggregation of hormonal and metabolic abnormalities in siblings of PCOS women. Some of the female relatives fulfill the diagnostic criteria of PCOS. Premature balding in the age of <30 has been proposed as the male phenotype in PCOS families.
The aim of the study was to determine whether siblings of women with PCOS had evidence of hormonal and metabolic abnormalities typical for PCOS.
Material and methods: Eighty-six siblings of women with PCOS (44 sisters, 42 brothers) were recruited. Two control groups consisted of 70 healthy women and 30 healthy men. Assessment of antropometric parameters, hormonal parameters (testosterone, androstendione, DHEA-S, LH, FSH) and metabolic parameters (glucose and insulin: fasting and during OGTT, insulin sensitivity and insulin resistance indexes, lipidogram) were carried out in all subjects.
Results: Mean testosterone and DHEA-S levels were higher in the group of sisters in comparision with the controls. Brothers of women with PCOS compared to the controls had higher DHEA-S level and had tendency to higher testosterone level. Siblings of women with PCOS had much more disadvantageous metabolic parameters than the controls. There were no differences in age, antropometric parameters and parameters of carbohydrate and lipid metabolism between sisters with (8 sisters) or without (36 sisters) PCOS. Premature balding brothers (11 brothers) did not differ from the brothers without balding (31 brothers) in hormonal and metabolic parameters.
Conclusions: Siblings of women with PCOS are predisposed to hormonal and metabolic abnormalities typical for PCOS. The symptom of premature balding in the age of <30 in brothers of women with PCOS should not be considered as male PCOS equivalent.
Prague, Czech Republic
24 - 28 Apr 2010
European Society of Endocrinology