Causes, patterns, and severity of androgen excess in 1205 consecutively recruited women
Research output: Contribution to journal › Article › peer-review
Colleges, School and Institutes
- University Hospital Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust
- Birmingham Health Partners
Context: Androgen excess in women is predominantly due to underlying polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). However, there is a lack of clarity regarding patterns and severity of androgen excess that should be considered predictive of non-PCOS pathology.
Objective: We examined the diagnostic utility of simultaneous measurement of serum dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS), androstenedione (A4), and testosterone (T) to delineate biochemical signatures and cutoffs predictive of non-PCOS disorders in women with androgen excess.
Design: Retrospective review of all women undergoing serum androgen measurement at a large tertiary referral center between 2012 and 2016. Serum A4 and T were measured by tandem mass spectrometry and DHEAS by immunoassay. Patients with at least one increased serum androgen underwent phenotyping by clinical notes review.
Results: In 1205 women, DHEAS, A4, and T were measured simultaneously. PCOS was the most common diagnosis in premenopausal (89%) and postmenopausal women (29%). A4 was increased in all adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC) cases (n = 15) and T in all ovarian hyperthecosis (OHT) cases (n = 7); all but one case of congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH; n = 18) were identified by increased levels of A4 and/or T. In premenopausal women, CAH was a prevalent cause of severe A4 (59%) and T (43%) excess; severe DHEAS excess was predominantly due to PCOS (80%). In postmenopausal women, all cases of severe DHEAS and A4 excess were caused by ACC and severe T excess equally by ACC and OHT.
Conclusions: Pattern and severity of androgen excess are important predictors of non-PCOS pathology and may be used to guide further investigations as appropriate.
|Number of pages||10|
|Journal||The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism|
|Early online date||12 Jan 2018|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Mar 2018|
- Androgen excess, DHEAS, premenopausal, postmenopausal, testosterone, androstenedione