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Open access

Sarantis Livadas, Christina Bothou, Justyna Kuliczkowska-Płaksej, Ralitsa Robeva, Andromahi Vryonidou, Jelica Bjekic Macut, Ioannis Androulakis, Milica Opalic, Zadalla Mouslech, Andrej Milewicz, Alessandra Gambineri, Dimitrios Panidis, and Djuro Macut

Background

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is considered a risk factor for the development of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). However, which is the most appropriate way to evaluate dysglycemia in women with PCOS and who are at increased risk are as yet unclear.

Aim of the study

To determine the prevalence of T2DM, impaired glucose tolerance (IGT), and impaired fasting glucose (IFG) in PCOS women and potential factors to identify those at risk.

Subjects and methods

The oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT), biochemical/hormonal profile, and ovarian ultrasound data from 1614 Caucasian women with PCOS and 362 controls were analyzed in this cross-sectional multicenter study. The data were categorized according to age and BMI.

Results

Dysglycemia (T2DM, IGT, and IFG according to World Health Organization criteria) was more frequent in the PCOS group compared to controls: 2.2% vs 0.8%, P = 0.04; 9.5% vs 7.4%, P = 0.038; 14.2% vs 9.1%, P = 0.002, respectively. OGTT was essential for T2DM diagnosis, since in 88% of them basal glucose values were inconclusive for diagnosis. The presence of either T2DM or IFG was irrespective of age (P = 0.54) and BMI (P = 0.32), although the latter was associated with IGT (P = 0.021). There was no impact of age and BMI status on the prevalence of T2DM or IFG. Regression analysis revealed a role for age, BMI, fat deposition, androgens, and insulin resistance for dysglycemia. However, none of the factors prevailed as a useful marker employed in clinical practice.

Conclusions

One-third of our cohort of PCOS women with either T2DM or IGT displayed normal fasting glucose values but without confirming any specific predictor for dysglycemic condition. Hence, the evaluation of glycemic status using OGTT in all women with PCOS is strongly supported.

Open access

Dorte Glintborg, Hanne Mumm, Jens Juul Holst, and Marianne Andersen

Context

Insulin resistance in polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) may increase the risk of reactive hypoglycaemia (RH) and decrease glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) secretion. The possible effects of treatment with oral contraceptives (OCP) and/or metformin on GLP-1 secretion and risk of RH in PCOS is undetermined.

Setting

Outpatient clinic.

Patients and interventions

Randomized, controlled clinical trial. Ninety women with PCOS were randomized to 12-month treatment with OCP (150 mg desogestrel + 30 mg ethinylestradiol), metformin (2 g/day) or metformin + OCP. Five-hour oral glucose tolerance tests (5-h OGTT) measuring fasting and area under the curve (AUC) for GLP-1, glucose, insulin and C-peptide were performed before and after the intervention period. Sixty-five women completed the study and 34 weight-matched healthy women were included as controls.

Main outcome measures

Changes in GLP-1, glucose, insulin and C-peptide during 5-h OGTT.

Results

Fasting GLP-1 levels increased during metformin + OCP vs OCP treatment, whereas AUC GLP-1 levels were unchanged during medical treatment. The prevalence of reactive hypoglycemia increased from 9/65 to 14/65 after intervention (P < 0.01) and was more common after treatment with metformin + OCP (increase from 3/23 to 6/23, P = 0.01). Reactive hypoglycaemia was associated with higher insulin and C-peptide levels during 5-h OGTT, but was unassociated with BMI and AUC GLP-1. GLP-1 levels were comparable in PCOS vs controls. AUC GLP-1 levels were significantly lower in obese vs lean patients and were inversely associated with BMI.

Conclusions

AUC GLP-1 levels were unchanged during treatment. Increased risk of hypoglycemia during metformin + OCP could be associated with increased insulin secretion.

Open access

Malin Nylander, Signe Frøssing, Caroline Kistorp, Jens Faber, and Sven O Skouby

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is associated with increased risk of venous thromboembolism (VTE) and cardiovascular disease (CVD) in later life. We aimed to study the effect of liraglutide intervention on markers of VTE and CVD risk, in PCOS. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized trial, 72 overweight and/or insulin-resistant women with PCOS were randomized, in a 2:1 ratio, to liraglutide or placebo 1.8 mg/day. Endpoints included between-group difference in change (baseline to follow-up) in plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 levels and in thrombin generation test parameters: endogenous thrombin potential, peak thrombin concentration, lag time and time to peak. Mean weight loss was 5.2 kg (95% CI 3.0–7.5 kg, P < 0.001) in the liraglutide group compared with placebo. We detected no effect on endogenous thrombin potential in either group. In the liraglutide group, peak thrombin concentration decreased by 16.71 nmol/L (95% CI 2.32–31.11, P < 0.05) and lag time and time to peak increased by 0.13 min (95% CI 0.01–0.25, P < 0.05) and 0.38 min (95% CI 0.09–0.68, P < 0.05), respectively, but there were no between-group differences. There was a trend toward 12% (95% CI 0–23, P = 0.05) decreased plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 in the liraglutide group, and there was a trend toward 16% (95% CI −4 to 32, P = 0.10) reduction, compared with placebo. In overweight women with PCOS, liraglutide intervention caused an approximate 5% weight loss. In addition, liraglutide affected thrombin generation, although not significantly differently from placebo. A concomitant trend toward improved fibrinolysis indicates a possible reduction of the baseline thrombogenic potential. The findings point toward beneficial effects of liraglutide on markers of VTE and CVD risk, which should be further pursued in larger studies.

Open access

Valentina Guarnotta, Silvia Lucchese, Mariagrazia Irene Mineo, Donatella Mangione, Renato Venezia, Piero Luigi Almasio, and Carla Giordano

Objective

The aim of this study is to clarify, in girls with premature pubarche (PP), the influence of premature androgenization on the prevalence of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).

Design and patients

Ninety-nine PP girls, 63 who developed PCOS and 36 who did not develop PCOS, were retrospectively included. Clinical, anthropometric, and metabolic parameters were evaluated at the time of diagnosis of PP and after 10 years from menarche to find predictive factors of PCOS.

Results

Young females with PP showed a PCOS prevalence of 64% and showed a higher prevalence of familial history of diabetes (P = 0.004) and a lower prevalence of underweight (P = 0.025) than PP-NO-PCOS. In addition, girls with PP-PCOS showed higher BMI (P < 0.001), waist circumference (P < 0.001), total testosterone (P = 0.026), visceral adiposity index (VAI) (P = 0.013), total cholesterol (P < 0.001), LDL-cholesterol (P < 0.001), non-HDL cholesterol (P < 0.001) and lower age of menarche (P = 0.015), ISI-Matsuda (P < 0.001), DIo (P = 0.002), HDL cholesterol (P = 0.026) than PP-NO-PCOS. Multivariate analysis showed that WC (P = 0.049), ISI-Matsuda (P < 0.001), oral disposition index (DIo) (P < 0.001), VAI (P < 0.001), total testosterone (P < 0.001) and LDL-cholesterol (P < 0.001) are independent predictive factors for PCOS in girls with PP.

Conclusions

Our study established a strong association between multiple risk factors and development of PCOS in PP girls. These risk factors are predominantly related to the regulation of glucose, lipid, and androgen metabolism. Among these factors, WC, ISI-Matsuda, DIo, VAI, total testosterone, and LDL-cholesterol predict PCOS.

Open access

E Kohva, P J Miettinen, S Taskinen, M Hero, A Tarkkanen, and T Raivio

Background

We describe the phenotypic spectrum and timing of diagnosis and management in a large series of patients with disorders of sexual development (DSD) treated in a single pediatric tertiary center.

Methods

DSD patients who had visited our tertiary center during the survey period (between 2004 and 2014) were identified based on an ICD-10 inquiry, and their phenotypic and molecular genetic findings were recorded from patient charts.

Results

Among the 550 DSD patients, 53.3% had 46,XY DSD; 37.1% had sex chromosome DSD and 9.6% had 46,XX DSD. The most common diagnoses were Turner syndrome (19.8%, diagnosed at the mean age of 4.7 ± 5.5 years), Klinefelter syndrome (14.5%, 6.8 ± 6.2 years) and bilateral cryptorchidism (23.1%). Very few patients with 46,XY DSD (7%) or 46,XX DSD (21%) had molecular genetic diagnosis. The yearly rate of DSD diagnoses remained stable over the survey period. After the release of the Nordic consensus on the management of undescended testes, the age at surgery for bilateral cryptorchidism declined significantly (P < 0.001).

Conclusions

Our results show that (i) Turner syndrome and Klinefelter syndrome, the most frequent single DSD diagnoses, are still diagnosed relatively late; (ii) a temporal shift was observed in the management of bilateral cryptorchidism, which may favorably influence patients’ adulthood semen quality and (iii) next-generation sequencing methods are not fully employed in the diagnostics of DSD patients.

Open access

Elin Kahlert, Martina Blaschke, Knut Brockmann, Clemens Freiberg, Onno E Janssen, Nikolaus Stahnke, Domenika Strik, Martin Merkel, Alexander Mann, Klaus-Peter Liesenkötter, and Heide Siggelkow

Objective

Turner syndrome (TS) is characterized by the complete or partial loss of the second sex chromosome and associated with a wide range of clinical manifestations. We aimed to assess the medical care of adult patients with TS in Germany.

Design

Retrospective multicenter observational study.

Methods

Data were collected from medical records of 258 women with TS treated between 2001 and 2017 in five non-university endocrinologic centers in Germany.

Results

Mean age was 29.8 ± 11.6 years, mean height 152 ± 7.7 cm, and mean BMI 26.6 ± 6.3 kg/m2. The karyotype was known in 50% of patients. Information on cholesterol state, liver enzymes, and thyroid status was available in 81–98% of women with TS; autoimmune thyroiditis was diagnosed in 37%. Echocardiography was performed in 42% and cardiac MRI in 8.5%, resulting in a diagnosis of cardiovascular disorder in 28%. Data on growth hormone therapy were available for 40 patients (15%) and data concerning menarche in 157 patients (61%).

Conclusion

In 258 women with TS, retrospective analysis of healthcare data indicated that medical management was focused on endocrine manifestations. Further significant clinical features including cardiovascular disease, renal malformation, liver involvement, autoimmune diseases, hearing loss, and osteoporosis were only marginally if at all considered. Based on this evaluation and in accordance with recent guidelines, we compiled a documentation form facilitating the transition from pediatric to adult care and further medical management of TS patients. The foundation of Turner Centers in March 2019 will improve the treatment of TS women in Germany.

Open access

Yao Chen and Shu-ying Fang

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a heterogenous endocrine disorder with typical symptoms of oligomenorrhoea, hyperandrogenism, hirsutism, obesity, insulin resistance and increased risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus. Extensive evidence indicates that PCOS is a genetic disease and numerous biochemical pathways have been linked with its pathogenesis. A number of genes from these pathways have been investigated, which include those involved with steroid hormone biosynthesis and metabolism, action of gonadotropin and gonadal hormones, folliculogenesis, obesity and energy regulation, insulin secretion and action and many others. In this review, we summarize the historical and recent findings in genetic polymorphisms of PCOS from the relevant publications and outline some genetic polymorphisms that are potentially associated with the risk of PCOS. This information could uncover candidate genes associating with PCOS, which will be valuable for the development of novel diagnostic and treatment platforms for PCOS patients.

Open access

Veronica Kieffer, Kate Davies, Christine Gibson, Morag Middleton, Jean Munday, Shashana Shalet, Lisa Shepherd, and Phillip Yeoh

This competency framework was developed by a working group of endocrine specialist nurses with the support of the Society for Endocrinology to enhance the clinical care that adults with an endocrine disorder receive. Nurses should be able to demonstrate that they are functioning at an optimal level in order for patients to receive appropriate care. By formulating a competency framework from which an adult endocrine nurse specialist can work, it is envisaged that their development as professional practitioners can be enhanced. This is the second edition of the Competency Framework for Adult Endocrine Nursing. It introduces four new competencies on benign adrenal tumours, hypo- and hyperparathyroidism, osteoporosis and polycystic ovary syndrome. The authors and the Society for Endocrinology welcome constructive feedback on the document, both nationally and internationally, in anticipation that further developments and ideas can be incorporated into future versions.

Open access

Sebastião Freitas de Medeiros, Cinthia Marenza Ormond, Matheus Antônio Souto de Medeiros, Nayara de Souza Santos, Camila Regis Banhara, and Márcia Marly Winck Yamamoto

Objective

To examine the anthropometric, and metabolic connections of 17-hydroxypregnenolone in the normo- and hyperandrogenemic polycystic ovary syndrome phenotypes.

Materials and methods

This cohort study was conducted at the Julio Muller University Hospital, Cuiabá, Brazil, between January 2014 and July 2016, and 91 normal cycling healthy women, 46 normoandrogenemic and 147 hyperandrogenemic, patients with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) were enrolled according to the Rotterdam criteria. Several anthropometric, biochemical and hormonal parameters were properly verified and correlated with 17-hydroxypregnenolone (17-OHPE) concentrations.

Results

17-OHPE was higher in hyperandrogenemic PCOS than in normoandrogenemic PCOS and in control groups (P = 0.032 and P < 0.001, respectively). In healthy controls, 17-OHPE was positively associated with glucose, free estrogen index, DHEAS and negatively associated with compounds S. In normoandrogenemic PCOS patients, 17-OHPE presented positive correlations with VAI, LAP, cortisol, insulin and HOMA-IR. In the hyperandrogenemic group, 17-OHPE presented significant negative correlations with most anthropometric parameters, HOMA-IR, HOMA %B, estradiol, free estrogen index (FEI), C-peptide, and TG levels and positive correlations with HOMA-S and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), sex-hormone binding globulin (SHBG), androstenedione (A4) and dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA). Regarding hyperandrogenemic PCOS, and using a stepwise multiple regression, only HOMA-S and WHR were retained in the model (R 2 = 0.294, P < 0.001).

Conclusion

17-OHPE exhibited different relationships with anthropometric, and biochemical parameters in PCOS patients, depending on the androgen levels. In PCOS subjects with high androgen concentrations, 17-OHPE was negatively associated with most anthropometric parameters, particularly with those used as markers of adipose tissue dysfunction and frequently employed as predictors of cardiovascular disease risk; otherwise, 17-OHPE was positively associated with HDL-C and HOMA-S in this patients. Future studies are required to evaluate the clinical implications of these novel findings.

Open access

Anita Hokken-Koelega, Aart-Jan van der Lely, Berthold Hauffa, Gabriele Häusler, Gudmundur Johannsson, Mohamad Maghnie, Jesús Argente, Jean DeSchepper, Helena Gleeson, John W Gregory, Charlotte Höybye, Fahrettin Keleştimur, Anton Luger, Hermann L Müller, Sebastian Neggers, Vera Popovic-Brkic, Eleonora Porcu, Lars Sävendahl, Stephen Shalet, Bessie Spiliotis, and Maithé Tauber

Objective

Seamless transition of endocrine patients from the paediatric to adult setting is still suboptimal, especially in patients with complex disorders, i.e., small for gestational age, Turner or Prader–Willi syndromes; Childhood Cancer Survivors, and those with childhood-onset growth hormone deficiency.

Methods

An expert panel meeting comprised of European paediatric and adult endocrinologists was convened to explore the current gaps in managing the healthcare of patients with endocrine diseases during transition from paediatric to adult care settings.

Results

While a consensus was reached that a team approach is best, discussions revealed that a ‘one size fits all’ model for transition is largely unsuccessful in these patients. They need more tailored care during adolescence to prevent complications like failure to achieve target adult height, reduced bone mineral density, morbid obesity, metabolic perturbations (obesity and body composition), inappropriate/inadequate puberty, compromised fertility, diminished quality of life and failure to adapt to the demands of adult life. Sometimes it is difficult for young people to detach emotionally from their paediatric endocrinologist and/or the abrupt change from an environment of parental responsibility to one of autonomy. Discussions about impending transition and healthcare autonomy should begin in early adolescence and continue throughout young adulthood to ensure seamless continuum of care and optimal treatment outcomes.

Conclusions

Even amongst a group of healthcare professionals with a great interest in improving transition services for patients with endocrine diseases, there is still much work to be done to improve the quality of healthcare for transition patients.