Reproductive Biology and Endocrinology
Recurrent maternal virilization during pregnancy in patients with PCOS: two clinical cases
Reproductive Biology and Endocrinology201816:107
© The Author(s). 2018
- Published: 30 October 2018
Maternal virilization during pregnancy is a rare phenomenon. Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), luteoma and luteinic cysts are the most frequent and benign etiologies. This article presents two cases of recurrent maternal virilization during pregnancy.
Our reported cases were young women with Afro-Caribbean and Nigerian origins. Data were collected by history-taking, clinical examination, laboratory investigations, transabdominal ultrasonographic examination and Magnetic Resonance Imaging. Both patients were diagnosed with PCOS according to the Rotterdam criteria. During each of their pregnancies they both developed an explosive hirsutism, a deepening in the voice, a clitoromegaly. Gestational diabetes occurred during pregnancies. There was no fetal virilization, despite raising androgen levels, more than tenfold to normal. Improvement of hirsutism and normalization of androgens were described in postpartum.
Only few cases of maternal virilization during pregnancy were reported in literature and even fewer concern recurrent and bilateral ovarian etiology. Hyperplasia of ovarian theca cells seems to be the most likely explanation, which would suggest that PCOS belongs to a spectrum of abnormal reactivity of the ovary to human Chorionic Gonadotrophin (hCG) stimulation along with luteoma and luteinic cyst of pregnancy. Insulin resistance could worsen hyperandrogenism but is not enough to explain virilization. Treatment should focus on protecting the fetus of possible virilization as well as its mother, but also on preserving the subsequent fertility in both.
- Polycystic ovary syndrome
- Luteinic cyst
- Gestational diabetes
- Insulin resistance