, Volume 284, Issue 6, pp 1443-1448
Date: 18 Jan 2011

Ovarian morphology and endocrine function in polycystic ovary syndrome

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To assess the relationship between ovarian morphology, hormonal levels and anthropometrical characteristics in a group of patients with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).


This prospective, cross-sectional study included 82 patients with diagnosis of PCOS and 21 women with regular menstrual cycles without hyperandrogenism. They were submitted to endovaginal pelvic ultrasound. Anthropometric measures and hormonal levels of LH, FSH, insulin, total testosterone (T), free T, dehydroepiandrosterone and dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate were evaluated. The morphology of polycystic ovary (PCO) was considered when 12 or more follicles, less than 10 mm in diameter, in one or both ovaries, were observed. PCOS patients were divided into two groups: with PCO (n = 51) and without PCO (n = 31).


In 51 out of 82 (62%) patients with PCOS, an image of PCO was observed. PCOS Patients with PCO showed a significantly greater body mass index and hip perimeter than PCOS patients without PCO. Higher levels of total T and free T were found in PCOS patients with PCO compared to those without PCO.


PCOS patients with PCO on ultrasound present greater hyperandrogenism and obesity than PCOS patients without PCO. The presence of PCO appears to indicate a major clinical alteration of PCOS.

G. Tena and C. Moran contributed equally to this manuscript.