Incidence of polycystic ovaries and androgen serum levels in women with borderline personality disorder

Stefan Roepke*, Andreas Ziegenhorn, Julia Kronsbein, Angela Merkl, Scharif Bahri, Julia Lange, Horst Lübbert, Ulrich Schweiger, Isabella Heuser, Claas H. Lammers

*Corresponding author for this work
21 Citations (Scopus)


Obesity, increased visceral fat and disturbed glucose metabolism have been found in borderline personality disorder (BPD) patients. These conditions are often associated with disturbed androgen metabolism. Elevated androgens in women are related to polycystic ovaries (PCO) and might have an impact on psychopathology. Thus, higher prevalence of PCO and elevated androgen levels are suspected in BPD. In the study, we examined 31 BPD patients and 30 healthy controls ultrasonographically for PCO and measured their serum levels of androgens and interacting hormones. Furthermore, influence on psychopathology of free testosterone (FT) serum level was assessed. PCO was significantly more prevalent in BPD patients (30.4%) compared to healthy controls (6.9%). Testosterone, FT, androstenedione (A), and 17α-hydroxyprogesterone (17-OHP) were significantly elevated in the BPD group independently of BMI. FT serum level significantly correlated with depressive symptoms. In summary, our data suggest a disturbed androgen metabolism in BPD patients.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Psychiatric Research
Issue number13
Pages (from-to)847-852
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 10.2010

Research Areas and Centers

  • Academic Focus: Center for Brain, Behavior and Metabolism (CBBM)


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