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Clinical characteristics of 138 Chinese female patients with idiopathic hypogonadotropic hypogonadism

Rui-yi Tang, Rong Chen, Miao Ma, Shou-qing Lin, Yi-wen Zhang, and Ya-ping Wang


To evaluate the clinical features of Chinese women with idiopathic hypogonadotropic hypogonadism (IHH).


We retrospectively reviewed the clinical characteristics, laboratory and imaging findings, therapeutic management and fertility outcomes of 138 women with IHH. All patients had been treated and followed up at an academic medical centre during 1990–2016.


Among the 138 patients, 82 patients (59.4%) were diagnosed with normosmic IHH and 56 patients (40.6%) were diagnosed with Kallmann syndrome (KS). The patients with IHH experienced occasional menses (4.3%), spontaneous thelarche (45.7%) or spontaneous pubarche (50.7%). Women with thelarche had a higher percentage of pubarche (P< 0.001) and higher gonadotropin concentrations (P< 0.01). Olfactory bulb/sulci abnormalities were found during the magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of all patients with KS. Most patients with IHH had osteopenia and low bone age. Among the 16 women who received gonadotropin-releasing hormone treatment, ovulation induction or assisted reproductive technology, the clinical pregnancy rate was 81.3% and the live birth rate was 68.8%.


The present study revealed that the phenotypic spectrum of women with IHH is broader than typical primary amenorrhoea with no secondary sexual development, including occasional menses, spontaneous thelarche or pubarche. MRI of the olfactory system can facilitate the diagnosis of KS. Pregnancy can be achieved after receiving appropriate treatment.