Background: Women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) appear at increased cardiovascular risk due in part to a dyslipidemia characterized by increased plasma triglyceride and reduced high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol levels. Obesity, insulin resistance and hyperandrogenemia are features of PCOS and potentially affect lipid metabolism. On the other hand, obesity has an important influence on the lipid metabolism.
Objectives: The aim of this study was to compare lipid profile in lean and obese women with PCOS with normal weight and obese controls.
Methods: The study group consisted of 106 women divided in four subgroups (1. lean PCOS, n=48; age 25.7±6.2; 2. obese PCOS, n=38; age 26.6±7.3; 3. lean controls, n=10, age 27.7±7.6; 4. obese controls, n=10, 26.8±7.57;). Data were analyzed by ANOVA and Games-Howell post-hoc test. Obesity was define by BMI>29 kg/m2.
Results: Cholesterol, LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels were significantly higher in obese PCOS group than in lean PCOS group (mean cholesterol was 5.22±1.03 vs 4.56±0.89; P=0.015; mean LDL cholesterol was 3.41±0.94 vs 2.81±0.77; P=0.025; mean triglyceride level was 1.79±1.05 vs 1.05±0.44; P=0.001;). On the contrary, HDL cholesterol levels were significantly lower in obese PCOS group than in lean PCOS group (1.08±0.29 vs 1.32±0.35; P=0.009;). There was no statistically significant difference in lipid profile between obese PCOS group and obese control. Comparing lean PCOS and lean controls, only triglyceride levels reached statistically significant difference (1.05±0.44 vs 0.73±0.22; P=0.009).
Conclusions: These data suggest that obesity affects lipid metabolism in PCOS subject, especially by reducing HDL cholesterol levels, suggesting a reduced capacity for cholesterol removal from tissues with diminished antiatherogenic potential. PCOS per se, affects only triglyceride levels.
01 - 05 Apr 2006
European Society of Endocrinology