Background: Smoking represents the most widespread substance dependence in the world. Several studies show the nicotines ability to alter women hormonal homeostasis. Women smokers have higher testosterone and lower estradiol levels throughout life compared to women non-smokers. This negatively affects women reproductive function. Furthermore, alteration of neuroactive and neuroprotective steroids occurs in women smokers, which plays an important role in the activity of the central nervous system, cognition, mental condition and substance dependence seriousness.
Methods: We monitored the effect of smoking discontinuation on steroid spectrum in 40 premenopausal women smokers. These women were examined before they began to discontinue smoking: after 6, 12, 24 and 48 weeks of abstinence. In each examination, blood was collected to determine steroid spectrum, LH, FSH and SHBG, also basic anthropometric data were measured using GC-MS or immunoanalysis. Repeated measures ANOVA model was used for evaluation of the data. The local Ethics Committee approved the study.
Results: Given the small number of women who endured not to smoke, the data could be analysed only after 6 weeks. No changes in C21 steroids were found. A slight increase in androgens after the smoking discontinuation occurred.
Conclusion: Chronic smoking causes hyperandrogenism in fertile women; after smoking discontinuation its further increase occurs. Longer-term monitoring is necessary for illustrating the effect of smoking discontinuation on steroid spectrum.
Grant NS/10215-3 of the Internal Grant Agency of the Ministry of Health of the Czech Republic (IGA MZCR) supported the study.
30 Apr - 04 May 2011
European Society of Endocrinology