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Aust N Z J Psychiatry. 2018 Feb;52(2):117-128. doi: 10.1177/0004867417730650. Epub 2017 Sep 9.

Borderline personality disorder and polycystic ovary syndrome: A review of the literature.

Author information

1
1 Monash Alfred Psychiatry Research Centre (MAPrc), Melbourne, VIC, Australia.
2
2 Monash University, Melbourne, VIC, Australia.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

This review examines the existing evidence for the relationship between borderline personality disorder and polycystic ovary syndrome, and to identify commonalities in etiological mechanisms of borderline personality disorder and polycystic ovary syndrome that might explain the relationship between these seemingly disparate disorders.

METHODS:

A search of Medline, EMBASE and Cochrane Central was undertaken on 5 December 2016 to identify studies investigating women with borderline personality disorder and polycystic ovary syndrome (or symptoms and markers specific to polycystic ovary syndrome).

RESULTS:

Nine studies were identified, including three cross-sectional studies investigating symptoms of polycystic ovary syndrome in women with borderline personality disorder, two cross-sectional and one cohort study examining the prevalence of psychiatric diagnoses in women with polycystic ovary syndrome and three case reports of comorbid borderline personality disorder and polycystic ovary syndrome.

CONCLUSION:

Overall, the literature shows women with borderline personality disorder to have higher than expected serum androgen levels and incidence of polycystic ovaries, which can be key features of polycystic ovary syndrome. However, this research is still in its infancy, which limits our understanding of this potential comorbid phenomenon. Given the emerging anecdotal and empirical evidence to date, a theoretical discussion of the potential psychoneuroendocrinological mechanism underlying the borderline personality disorder and polycystic ovary syndrome comorbidity is provided. Further rigorous studies using standardized diagnostic criteria for polycystic ovary syndrome are warranted. Specifically, the use of prospective controlled cohort studies may be able to determine the causality and temporality of observed comorbid borderline personality disorder and polycystic ovary syndrome.

KEYWORDS:

Borderline personality disorder; hyperandrogenism; polycystic ovary syndrome; psychiatric disorder; testosterone

PMID:
28891300
DOI:
10.1177/0004867417730650

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