What are the mortality and morbidity of hirsutism?

Updated: May 01, 2020
  • Author: George T Griffing, MD; Chief Editor: Michel E Rivlin, MD  more...
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Answer

The mortality and morbidity of hirsutism are determined by the underlying cause. Most women with idiopathic hirsutism have no associated mortality or morbidity. On the other extreme, a small number of women may have malignant disease with a grave prognosis.

A study by Comim et al suggested that premenopausal hirsutism and/or oligomenorrhea are risk factors for postmenopausal fractures, especially in the humerus and lower leg. The study included 1057 postmenopausal women aged over 55 years. [6]  However, another study, by Rubin et al, suggested that PCOS reduces fracture risk, although the report dealt with a younger group of patients than did the Comim study and indicated that the risk reduction was greater in women who were under age 30 years when diagnosed. [7]

A prospective study by Robinson et al indicated that an association exists between maternal hirsutism and behavioral problems in offspring. The investigators reported that children born to mothers with hirsutism had a greater risk of borderline emotional symptoms (adjusted risk ratio [aRR] = 2.61), conduct disorder (aRR = 2.54), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (aRR = 2.33), conduct problems (aRR = 2.22), and peer relationship difficulties (aRR = 1.92). [8]


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