Women with polycystic ovary syndrome have higher risk of heart disease

Sophia Antipolis [France]: Women of their 30s and 40s with a typical situation affecting how the ovaries work usually tend to get heart disease suggests a brand new examine. The examine has been printed within the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology, a journal of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC).

“Polycystic ovary syndrome isn`t a life sentence – there are many ways to stay heart healthy. Small changes add up, like eating more fruits and vegetables and doing more exercise,” mentioned examine creator Dr Clare Oliver-Williams of the University of Cambridge, UK.

It is estimated that 6-20 p.c of ladies of reproductive age have polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). Features of the situation embrace a number of cysts (fluid-filled sacs) on the ovaries, irregular intervals, extra physique hair or hair loss from the top on account of excessive ranges of male hormones, and problem changing into pregnant.

Women with PCOS usually tend to be obese or overweight, have diabetes, and have hypertension – all risk components for heart disease and stroke. This examine examined whether or not this dangerous profile interprets right into a larger chance of growing cardiovascular disease – and, for the primary time, whether or not that persists throughout the lifespan.

“Some PCOS symptoms are only present during the reproductive years, so it`s possible that the raised chance of heart disease might disappear later in life,” mentioned Dr. Oliver-Williams. The examine included 60,574 ladies receiving remedy to assist them get pregnant, similar to in vitro fertilisation (IVF), from 1994 to 2015. Of these, 6,149 (10.2 p.c had PCOS. 

The researchers used medical information to observe the ladies for 9 years. During that interval, 2,925 (4.eight p.c) ladies developed cardiovascular disease. Overall, ladies with PCOS have been at 19 p.c higher risk of growing cardiovascular disease than ladies who didn’t have PCOS. 

When divided into age teams, ladies with PCOS aged 50 and over didn’t have a higher risk of growing cardiovascular risk in comparison with their friends with out PCOS. Women of their 30s and 40s with PCOS have been at larger risk of cardiovascular disease in comparison with these with out PCOS. 

The proof in these beneath 30 was much less clear; that is possible as a result of there have been inadequate ladies of that age within the dataset to establish the risk. “Heart health appears to be a particular problem for young women with PCOS. This may be because they are more likely to be overweight and have high blood pressure and diabetes compared to their peers,” mentioned Dr. Oliver-Williams.

“Previous studies have suggested that these differences diminish with age. In other words, as women without PCOS get older, they increasingly become overweight and develop high blood pressure and diabetes. In a negative sense, they catch up to their peers with PCOS,” added Williams.

“PCOS can be a distressing condition. Not just because it can affect fertility. The physical effects can cause anxiety and depression. There`s so much pressure on young women to achieve what we`re told is the physical ideal. It takes age and time to embrace yourself and getting support from others is a vital step, so reach out if you need it,” she added.

“Knowledge is power and being aware of the heart risks means women with PCOS can do something about it. Women with PCOS have been dealt a tough hand but this is about how these women play their cards. There are fantastic PCOS support groups where they can find out what has helped others with PCOS lose weight, get more exercise, and have a healthier diet,” mentioned Dr Oliver-Williams.

She famous that the examine solely included Scandinavian ladies taking fertility remedy and warning is required when extending the findings to different teams.

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