How prevalent is PCOS in teen girls with type 2 diabetes?


Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and type 2 diabetes have some markers that suggest a connection, with PCOS patients exhibiting certain symptoms at greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes later. A systematic review examines the prevalence of the 2 conditions occurring in adolescent girls.

Type 2 diabetes is on the rise in the pediatric population. Polycystic ovary syndrome has certain symptoms such as insulin resistance, which suggests a connection to type 2 diabetes, and is linked to a number of conditions from depression to infertility. A systematic review examined the prevalence of the syndrome in teenage girls who also had type 2 diabetes.1

The investigators searched MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, Web of Science: Conference Proceedings Citation Index–Science, and the gray literature to find studies with an observational design that had recruited at least 10 participants and had a report on the prevalence of polycystic ovary syndrome in adolescent girls with type 2 diabetes. The main outcome of the review was to determine the prevalence of the syndrome and secondary outcomes included looking at the links between obesity and race with polycystic ovary syndrome prevalence.

Six studies met the inclusion criteria and included 470 girls with type 2 diabetes. The prevalence of polycystic ovary syndrome was 19.58% (95% CI, 12.02%-27.14%; I2 = 74%; P = .002). There was moderate to high variation in the study outcomes, but this was significantly reduced once studies that did not include the diagnostic criteria used to determine whether a girl had polycystic ovary syndrome were removed. This led to a calculated prevalence of 24.04% (95% CI, 15.07%-33.01%; I2 = 0%; P = .92). However, there was a lack of data to help determine the link with obesity and race.

The investigators concluded that roughly 1 in 5 girls had polycystic ovary syndrome in their meta-analysis, but they urged caution when considering the results because of the lack of diagnostic criteria seen in more than 1 study, especially because diagnosis in adolescence can be difficult. They urged further study into the links of obesity and race with polycystic ovary syndrome prevalence in girls with type 2 diabetes. Such research could help determine groups that are particularly at risk and provide the tools necessary for early treatment and assessment.

This article originally appeared on Contemporary Pediatrics®.


1. Cioana M, Deng J, Nadarajah A, et al. Prevalence of polycystic ovary syndrome in patients with pediatric type 2 diabetes: a systematic review and meta-analysis. JAMA Netw Open. 2022;5(2):e2147454. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2021.474

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