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Acta Endocrinol (Copenh). 1986 Mar;111(3):368-72.

Ovarian multifollicularity, high LH and androgen plasma levels, and anovulation are frequent and strongly linked in adolescent irregular cycles.


Ninety-seven adolescents (0.5-6.0 years in gynaecological age) suffering from various kinds of menstrual irregularities were studied and compared with 20 adults by performing ovarian ultrasonography and plasma hormonal determinations. High percentages of multifollicularity (57.7%) and enlarged ovaries (46.3%) were found in the entire group of adolescents. Adolescents with multifollicular ovaries (more than 4 cystic areas) showed higher percentages of luteinizing hormone (LH: 32%), testosterone (T: 34%), and androstenedione (A: 43%) levels exceeding the upper normal adult range than subjects with homogeneous (less than 4 cystic areas) ovaries (LH: 12%, T: 10%, A: 19%, respectively). Ovulation can further discriminate the adolescents: in fact, adolescents with homogeneous ovaries and ovulatory cycles have a hormonal pattern almost identical to that of adults. On the contrary, subjects with multifollicular ovaries and anovulatory cycles show low values of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and high values of LH, T and A, significantly different from those in ovulatory subjects with homogeneous ovaries (P less than 0.005) and from those in adults (P less than 0.005).

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