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Eur J Endocrinol. 2000 Sep;143(3):405-8.

The best correlation of the new index of hyperandrogenism with the grade of increased body hair.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Apolinarska 18, Prague 2, 120 00, Czech Republic.



Hyperandrogenemia is the most frequent endocrine disorder in fertile women causing a variety of negative metabolic disturbances. Establishing the diagnosis of androgen overproduction has important implications for the follow-up and treatment of patients. The aim of our study was to identify the optimal laboratory marker of androgen production by correlating the markers to the presence or grade of increased body hair as a clinical sign of hyperandrogenism.


Prospective observational study.


A total of 62 women with acne were included into the study. The serum concentrations of testosterone, androstenedione, dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), DHEA sulfate (DHEAS) and sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) were evaluated. The index of free testosterone (IFT) and a new index of hyperandrogenism (IHA) were calculated. The monitored laboratory markers were correlated to the presence or grade of increased body hair using several statistical methods.


The statistical significance of differences between the average levels of laboratory markers between hirsute and non-hirsute women decreased in the following order: IHA, androstenedione and DHEA. Of all the above laboratory markers, only increased IHA was present significantly more often in hirsute women. The significance of correlation between the grade of increased body hair and the tested variables decreased in the following order: IHA, IFT, DHEA, androstenedione, DHEAS and testosterone.


The clinical marker of hyperandrogenism correlates most closely to IHA, reflecting the levels of all commonly determined androgens or androgen precursors and SHBG. Its simple calculation makes IHA a suitable tool for determining total production of androgens in clinical practice, especially in cases with borderline elevations of values.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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