Send to

Choose Destination
Endocr Res. 2015;40(4):204-10. doi: 10.3109/07435800.2015.1015730. Epub 2015 Mar 30.

High prevalence of Hashimoto's thyroiditis in patients with polycystic ovary syndrome: does the imbalance between estradiol and progesterone play a role?

Author information

a Diabetes, Endocrine and Obesity Branch, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, National Institutes of Health , Bethesda , MD , USA .
b Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism .
c Department of Internal Medicine , Ministry Of Health, Ankara Numune Research and Training Hospital , Ankara , Turkey , and.
d Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Faculty of Medicine , Hitit University , Corum , Turkey.



Some similar factors, such as genetic susceptibility and subinflammation/autoimmunity, contribute to development of both polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and Hashimoto's thyroiditis (HT), suggesting a potential pathogenic link between the two common disorders. In this study, we investigated the relationship between PCOS and HT, considering the possible effect of PCOS-related hormonal and metabolic factors on thyroid autoimmunity.


Eighty-six reproductive-age women diagnosed with PCOS according to Rotterdam criteria and 60 age-BMI matched control women were included in the study. All subjects had thyroid function tests, thyroid peroxidase anti-body (anti-TPO), thyroglobulin anti-body (anti-Tg), LH, FSH, estradiol, progesterone, androgens, fasting glucose, insulin, lipid, homeostasis model assessment insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) levels, thyroid and pelvic ultrasounds.


TSH, anti-TPO (p = 0.017), anti-Tg (p = 0.014), LH, DHEAS, testosterone, and HOMA-IR levels were significantly higher and progesterone were lower in PCOS women than in controls. Free T4, free T3, FSH, estradiol levels and thyroid volume were similar between the two groups. A higher percentage of PCOS patients had elevated TSH (26.7 and 5%; p = 0.001), anti-TPO (26.7 and 6.6%; p = 0.002), and anti-Tg (16.2 and 5%; p = 0.039). HT was more common in PCOS patients compared to controls (22.1 and 5%; p = 0.004). Estradiol (p = 0.003) were higher in anti-TPO positive PCOS women than anti-TPO negative ones. Anti-TPO was correlated positively with estradiol, estradiol/progesterone ratio, and TSH.


This study demonstrated a higher prevalence of HT, elevated TSH, anti-TPO, and anti-Tg levels in PCOS patients. Increased estrogen and estrogen/progesterone ratio seem to be directly involved in high anti-TPO levels in PCOS patients.


Estradiol; Hashimoto’s thyroiditis; polycystic ovary syndrome; progesterone; thyroid autoantibodies

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Taylor & Francis
Loading ...
Support Center