Introduction: Women with PCOS have increased risk for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). Alanine aminotransferase (ALT) is a sensitive indicator of liver cell injury. The aim of this study is to determine levels of liver enzymes in normal-weight women with PCOS.
Methods: PCOS was diagnosed using ESHRE/ASRM criteria. Normal weight was defined as BMI ≤25 kg/m2. We evaluated 62 normal weight women with PCOS (PCOS group: 20.99±1.92 kg/m2; 24.76±4.23 years) and 28 normal weight, BMI-matched healthy women (control group: 21.79±2.14 kg/m2; 30.93±5.63 years). Because groups differed in age (P<0.001), statistical analyses were adjusted for age. Blood samples were collected in follicular phase of menstrual cycle for determination of ALT, AST, gamma-GT (GGT), basal glucose, insulin, total-cholesterol (TC), HDL-cholesterol (HDL), LDL-cholesterol (LDL), triglycerides, testosterone and SHBG. HOMAIR was calculated using standard formula.
Results: PCOS had significantly higher testosterone (2.5±0.9 vs 1.2±0.4 nmol/l; P<0.001), ALT (21.8±10.0 vs 16.6±8.2 U/l; P=0.015), basal glucose (5.0±0.4 vs 4.6±0.3 mmol/l; P=0.001), insulin (15.3±7.9 vs 8.6±3.4 mU/l; P<0.001), HOMA (3.1±1.6 vs 1.9±0.8; P=0.005); triglycerides (0.9±0.4 vs 0.8±0.3 mmol/l; P=0.009), lower SHBG (42.3±21.9 vs 67.2±33.1 nmol/l; P=0.001) and AST/ALT (0.9±0.4 vs 1.3±0.4; P=0.001). There was no difference in other parameters between the groups (P>0.05). ALT correlated with triglycerides (r=0.303, P=0.017) and SHBG (r=−0.260, P=0.041).
Conclusion: Results of our group of PCOS women showing higher ALT level and AST:ALT ratio, may implicate on the presence of NAFLD irrespectively of body weight in those subjects.