Increased production of androgens, male hormones, in women is called hyperandrogenism. With the increase in androgen production, sensitivity in the tissues affected by these hormones also increases, resulting in the development of hair growth on the face, chest, lower abdomen, back and upper thighs and different physical changes.
Causes of Hyperandrogenism
- PCO (polycystic ovary)
- Androgen-producing ovarian tumors
- Cushing’s syndrome
- Congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH) (overactive adrenal gland)
- Genetic factors
- Some medicines
Symptoms of Hyperandrogenism
- Excessive development of hair in certain parts of the body (hirsutism)
- Oily skin
- Thickening of the voice
- Male body type
- Male pattern baldness
- Enlargement of the clitoris
How is Hyperandrogenism (Androgen Excess) Diagnosed?
22The diagnosis of hyperandrogenism is made in two ways: physical and pelvic examination and laboratory evaluation. In physical and pelvic examination, developments such as excessive hair growth, male pattern baldness, thickening of the voice, clitoris enlargement, decrease in breast volume are helpful in making the diagnosis. In the laboratory evaluation, testosterone and androstenedione are measured in the person’s serum or plasma. Hyperandrogenism sometimes only presents with complaints such as hirsutism and acne. Sometimes it can be seen with problems such as menstruation or infertility with disruption of ovulation patterns. In such cases, the patient should visit a physician to find the underlying cause of the disease and receive treatment appropriate to the underlying cause. Tumor formation should be considered if the symptoms started suddenly and progress very rapidly and testosterone levels are more than 2 times normal.
How to Treat Hyperandrogenism?
Treatment of hyperandrogenism depends on the cause of the disease and whether the patient wants to become pregnant. If pregnancy is not desired, treatment aims to stop new hair growth and regulate the menstrual cycle by eliminating existing ones. Combined oral contraceptives, birth control pills, spironolactone and flutamide are used in treatment.
If the patient wants pregnancy, ovulation induction methods should be applied. These methods are applied with the use of oral clomiphene citrate or gonadotropins. Medications and treatment methods such as Clomiphene, Clomiphene citrate, Gonadotropins and Metformin are used in treatment.
Since hypernadrogenism carries risks such as hypertension, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, uterine cancer and breast diseases, especially in advanced ages, a specialist physician should be consulted when symptoms are noticed and one of the appropriate treatment options should be preferred.