Metabolic Syndrome: Polycystic Ovary Syndrome

FP Essent. 2015 Aug;435:30-42.

Abstract

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a heterogeneous condition characterized by androgen excess, ovulatory dysfunction, and polycystic ovaries. It is the most common endocrinopathy among women of reproductive age, affecting between 6.5% and 8% of women, and is the most common cause of infertility. Insulin resistance is almost always present in women with PCOS, regardless of weight, and they often develop diabetes and metabolic syndrome. The Rotterdam criteria are widely used for diagnosis. These criteria require that patients have at least two of the following conditions: hyperandrogenism, ovulatory dysfunction, and polycystic ovaries. The diagnosis of PCOS also requires exclusion of other potential etiologies of hyperandrogenism and ovulatory dysfunction. The approach to PCOS management differs according to the presenting symptoms and treatment goals, particularly the patient's desire for pregnancy. Weight loss through dietary modifications and exercise is recommended for patients with PCOS who are overweight. Oral contraceptives are the first-line treatment for regulating menstrual cycles and reducing manifestations of hyperandrogenism, such as acne and hirsutism. Clomiphene is the first-line drug for management of anovulatory infertility. Metformin is recommended for metabolic abnormalities such as prediabetes, and a statin should be prescribed for cardioprotection if the patient meets standard criteria for statin therapy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Androgen Antagonists / therapeutic use*
  • Contraceptives, Oral, Hormonal / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Hirsutism / complications
  • Hirsutism / drug therapy
  • Humans
  • Hyperandrogenism / complications
  • Hyperandrogenism / drug therapy*
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Infertility, Female / therapy
  • Insulin Resistance*
  • Metabolic Syndrome / complications
  • Metabolic Syndrome / diagnosis
  • Obesity / complications
  • Obesity / therapy*
  • Polycystic Ovary Syndrome / complications
  • Polycystic Ovary Syndrome / diagnosis
  • Polycystic Ovary Syndrome / therapy*
  • Risk Reduction Behavior*
  • Weight Loss

Substances

  • Androgen Antagonists
  • Contraceptives, Oral, Hormonal
  • Hypoglycemic Agents