Correction of hyperandrogenemia by laparoscopic ovarian cautery in women with polycystic ovarian syndrome is not accompanied by improved insulin sensitivity or lipid-lipoprotein levels.

Research paper by S S Lemieux, G F GF Lewis, A A Ben-Chetrit, G G Steiner, E M EM Greenblatt

Indexed on: 24 Nov '99Published on: 24 Nov '99Published in: The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism


Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is a common disorder associated with hyperandrogenemia and infertility. Abdominal obesity, insulin resistance, and dyslipoproteinemias are other common metabolic disorders typically found in women with PCOS. The cause-effect relationship between hyperandrogenemia and insulin resistance-dyslipoproteinemia remains unclear. In this study, we have investigated the changes in androgenemia, insulin sensitivity, and plasma lipid-lipoprotein levels after laparoscopic ovarian cautery (LOC) for ovulation induction in eight infertile women with clomiphene citrate-resistant PCOS. After LOC, significant decreases in androstenedione (43%), testosterone (48%), and free testosterone (48%) concentrations were observed (P < 0.05). Glucose utilization during an euglycemic-hyperinsulinemic clamp did not change after LOC. In addition, no significant changes after the surgical procedure were observed for cholesterol, triglycerides, and apolipoprotein concentrations measured in total plasma and in different lipoprotein fractions. In conclusion, within the short duration of observation of this study, our findings demonstrate that insulin resistance and lipoprotein abnormalities associated with PCOS are not secondary to hyperandrogenemia. The clinician, therefore, must be cognizant of the persistence of these metabolic risk factors for cardiovascular disease once successful ovulation and fertility is restored, and institute appropriate monitoring, counseling, and medical intervention as required.