Influence of body mass index on measured and calculated androgen parameters in adult women with Hirsutism and PCOS.Exp Clin Endocrinol Diabetes. 2007 Jun; 115(6):380-6.EC
There is growing evidence that obesity in women lead to a more severe form of hyperandrogenism and other endocrine abnormalities which may have some health implications later in life. Obese females are at higher risk for metabolic syndrome due to severe hyperandrogenemia. Calculated values for free testosterone are equivalent to those obtained by equilibrium dialysis, which is one of the reference measurement procedures (RMP) for estimation of free testosterone and may be capable of replacing values estimated using RMP's. For adult women correlations of body mass index (BMI) with calculated free (cFT) and bioavailable testosterone (cBT) are still rare, while these data are reported for peripubertal and adolescent girls. In this study we aimed to investigate the association between BMI and different androgen parameters (including calculated free and bioavailable testosterone, free androgen index, and sex hormone-binding globulin [SHBG]) in adult women with Hirsutism and with PCOS. In hirsute women with BMI > or = 25 kg/m2 measured total testosterone (TT) was significantly higher, SHBG was significantly lower and the calculated androgen parameter (FAI, cFT and cBT) were significantly higher compared to women with BMI < 25 kg/m2. In PCOS women with BMI > or = 25 kg/m2 TT was significantly higher, SHBG was significantly lower and the calculated androgen parameter (FAI, cFT and cBT) were also significantly higher compared to women with BMI < 25 kg/m2. In both the Hirsutism and PCOS-group there was a positive correlation between BMI and TT, cFT, and cBT, while BMI was negatively correlated with SHBG. In summary, in adult women with Hirsutism and PCOS obesity is associated with increased levels of TT and decreased levels of SHBG resulting in significant elevated calculated free and bioavailable testosterone levels. Obesity might lead to a more severe form of hyperandrogenism with elevated calculated free and bioavailable testosterone in the study population.