Hyperandrogenic oligomenorrhea and metabolic risks across menopausal transition

Alex J. Polotsky, Amanda A. Allshouse, Sybil L. Crawford, Sioban D. Harlow, Naila Khalil, Rasa Kazlauskaite, Nanette Santoro, Richard S. Legro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Context: Although there is evidence of metabolic risks in young women with irregular menses and androgen excess, persistence of risks after menopause is unclear. Objective: The objective of the study was to determine the impact of menopause on the cardiometabolic profile in women with high androgens and a history of menstrual irregularity. Methods: Study of Women's Health Across the Nation is a longitudinal cohort study. Data from 1929womenwithout metabolic syndrome (MetS) at baseline were analyzed for incidence of MetS, self-reported stroke, and myocardial infarction. Cox hazard ratios (HRs) were estimated, adjusting for age, ethnicity, body mass, smoking, menopausal status, and study site. Results: Among MetS-free women at baseline, 497 new cases were identified during 20 249 woman- years of follow-up over 12 years. Women with hyperandrogenemia (HA) and oligomenorrhea (Oligo) developed incident cases of MetS at a comparable rate compared with their counterparts: eumenorrheic, normoandrogenic women [HR 1.4 (0.9 -2.2)], oligomenorrheic, normoandrogenic women [HR 1.3 (0.8 -2.2)], and eumenorrheic hyperandrogenic women [HR 1.2 (0.7-1.8)]. Smoking and obesity were the strongest predictors of incident MetS. There was no significant difference in incidence of self-reported stroke or MI by HA/Oligo status. Conclusions: Longitudinal evidence suggests that a history of androgen excess and menstrual irregularity is not associated with worsening of metabolic health after menopause. Our findings challenge the notion that a history of concurrent HA and Oligo reflects ongoing cardiometabolic risk in postmenopausal women.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2120-2127
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Biochemistry
  • Endocrinology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biochemistry, medical


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