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Clin Endocrinol (Oxf). 2013 Jun;78(6):907-13. doi: 10.1111/cen.12079. Epub 2013 Apr 6.

An evaluation of early cardiometabolic risk factors in children and adolescents with Turner syndrome.

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  • 1Divisions of Endocrinology, The Hospital for Sick Children, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada.



Turner syndrome (TS) confers increased lifetime risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus and cardiovascular disease. We compared cardiometabolic risk factors and measures of subcutaneous, visceral adipose tissue and intra-myocellular lipid between young TS girls and an age- and BMI-standard deviation scores (SDS)-matched healthy female cohort.


A cross-sectional cohort study was conducted at the Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto. Nineteen TS and 17 control girls (13.7 ± 2.5 vs 12.7 ± 3.4 years of age, respectively, P = 0.30). Multiple-sample oral glucose tolerance test with measurement of fasting insulin, LDL, HDL, triglycerides, adiponectin and highly sensitive C-reactive protein (hsCRP) was performed. Subcutaneous adipose tissue, visceral adipose tissue intramyocellular lipid levels evaluated by magnetic resonance techniques. Insulin secretion (IS), sensitivity (Si) and the insulin secretion-sensitivity index (ISSI-2) were calculated from oral glucose tolerance test data.


Five TS and no controls had impaired fasting glucose or impaired glucose tolerance; none had type 2 diabetes mellitus. Insulin sensitivity and insulin secretion were similar between groups; ISSI-2 was lower in TS (923.5 ± 307.3 vs 659.1 ± 387.3; P = 0.03). TS girls had higher blood pressure (82.5 ± 13.6 vs 73.5 ± 5.5 mmHg; P = 0.0146), waist circumference (76.0 ± 11.8 vs 65.9 ± 9.7; P = 0.0087) and subcutaneous adipose tissue (135.6 ± 88.6 vs 69.3 ± 59.9; P = 0.01) than controls. Visceral adipose tissue, intramyocellular lipid levels and adiponectin were not different between groups. TS girls also had higher triglycerides (1.1 ± 0.6 vs 0.7 ± 0.3; P = 0.003), total cholesterol (4.4 ± 0.7 vs 3.9 ± 0.4; P = 0.02) and hsCRP (2.0 ± 1.9 vs 0.8 ± 0.3; P = 0.01).


TS girls exhibit more cardiometabolic risk factors and reduced beta cell function compared with age- and BMI-SDS-matched girls. Increased awareness of early risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus and hypertension in TS girls is needed.

© 2012 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

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