Prevalence of functional disorders of androgen excess in unselected premenopausal women: a study in blood donors

    February 2012 in “Human Reproduction
    Raul Sanchón, Alessandra Gambineri, Macarena Alpañés, M. Ángeles Martínez-García, Renato Pasquali, Héctor F. Escobar-Morreale
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    TLDR Many young women who donate blood have hormonal disorders like excess male hormones and PCOS.
    In the 2012 study of 592 premenopausal women who were blood donors, researchers found a significant prevalence of functional disorders of androgen excess, including hyperandrogenism and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). Clinical signs of hyperandrogenism, such as hirsutism and acne, were present in 12.2% of participants, while alopecia was less common at 1.7%. The study revealed that 5.4% of the women had PCOS, 5.4% had idiopathic hirsutism, and 3.9% had idiopathic hyperandrogenism. Women with these conditions were generally younger and had higher hirsutism scores and serum androgen levels. The study suggested that isolated acne might be a normal variant, as affected women had similar health indicators to healthy women. The researchers proposed raising the cutoff value for hirsutism scores from 8 to 10 and emphasized the need for further research into the pathophysiology and health consequences of these conditions.
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