HealthDay News — The risk of fractures is reduced in women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), according to a study published in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research.

Katrine Hass Rubin, PhD, from the University of Southern Denmark in Odense, and colleagues examined fracture risk in patients with PCOS. Women with PCOS and/or hirsutism were identified from the Danish National Patient Register (19,199 women), and assigned three age-matched controls (57,483 women) on the index date of diagnosis of PCOS.

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The researchers found that within the cohort, fracture rates were decreased for women with PCOS versus controls (10.3 versus 13.6/1,000 patient-years) The adjusted odds ratios were 0.76, 0.82, and 0.57 for all fractures, major osteoporotic fractures, and fractures of the head and face, respectively. Women diagnosed before age 30 years had more pronounced risk reduction. Women with PCOS had significantly more strain- and sprain-related hospital contact. Within a well-characterized subcohort of 1,217 women, the researchers observed no difference in the risk reduction in fractures for PCOS women with normal versus elevated testosterone levels; risk reduction was slightly smaller in overweight women.

“Women with PCOS had reduced risk of fractures, in particular of the appendicular skeleton,” the authors wrote. “The risk reduction was greater in women with younger age at diagnosis, suggesting that the skeletal effects of PCOS may be greater in women who have not yet reached peak bone mass.”


Rubin K, Glintborg D, Nybo M, Andersen M, Abrahamsen B. Fracture risk is decreased in women with polycystic ovary syndrome: A register- and population-based cohort study. J Bone Miner Res. 2015:n/a-n/a. doi:10.1002/jbmr.2737.