Context: Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is the most common endocrine disorder in reproductive-age women. The hormonal and metabolic effects of coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) and/or vitamin E in patients with PCOS have not been studied, to our knowledge.
Objective: To evaluate the effects of CoQ10 and/or vitamin E on glucose homeostasis parameters and reproductive hormones in women with PCOS.
Design, setting, participants: Randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial among 86 women with PCOS.
Intervention: CoQ10 or vitamin E or combination for 8 weeks.
Main outcome measures: Glucose homeostasis parameters and sex hormone concentrations.
Results: After adjustment for potential confounders, supplementation with CoQ10 alone or in combination with vitamin E, compared with placebo, had significant effects on fasting blood sugar (FBS); vitamin E's effect on FBS was not significant. A significant reduction in homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) was observed in the CoQ10 and combined groups. CoQ10, vitamin E, and cosupplementation led to decreased serum total testosterone levels (P < 0.001) compared with those of the placebo group. CoQ10 supplementation in combination with vitamin E significantly improved in sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) levels compared with other groups (P = 0.008). Linear regression analysis revealed that changes in FBS, insulin, and HOMA-IR were predictors of change in free androgen index (P < 0.05).
Conclusion: CoQ10 with or without vitamin E supplementation among women with PCOS had beneficial effects on serum FBS and insulin levels, as well as HOMA-IR and total testosterone levels. However, only cosupplementation affected SHBG concentrations.