The associations of maternal polycystic ovary syndrome and hirsutism with behavioral problems in offspring.

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The associations of maternal polycystic ovary syndrome and hirsutism with behavioral problems in offspring.

Fertil Steril. 2020 02;113(2):435-443

Authors: Robinson SL, Ghassabian A, Sundaram R, Trinh MH, Bell EM, Mendola P, Yeung EH

OBJECTIVE: To study the associations between maternal polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and hirsutism with offspring attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), anxiety, conduct disorder, and behavioral problems.
DESIGN: Prospective birth cohort study.
SETTING: Not applicable.
PATIENT(S): A total of 1,915 mother-child dyads.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE(S): Maternal report of offspring ADHD, anxiety, or conduct disorder diagnosis at 7 to 8 years; emotional symptoms, behavioral problems (including peer relationship, conduct, hyperactivity/inattention), and prosocial problems measured with the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) at 7 years.
RESULT(S): Prevalence of PCOS and hirsutism were 12.0% and 3.9%; 84% of women with hirsutism had PCOS. After adjustment for sociodemographic covariates, prepregnancy body mass index, and parental history of affective disorders, children born to mothers with PCOS had higher risk of anxiety (adjusted risk ratio [aRR] 1.62; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.02-2.57) and borderline emotional symptoms (aRR 1.66; 95% CI, 1.18-2.33) compared with children born to mothers without PCOS. The associations between maternal PCOS and offspring ADHD were positive but imprecise. Maternal hirsutism was related to a higher risk of children’s ADHD (aRR 2.33; 95% CI, 1.28-4.24), conduct disorder (aRR 2.54; 95% CI 1.18-5.47), borderline emotional symptoms, peer relationship problems, and conduct problems (aRRs 2.61; 95% CI, 1.69-4.05; 1.92; 95% CI, 1.16-3.17; and 2.22; 95% CI, 1.30-3.79, respectively).
CONCLUSION(S): Maternal PCOS was associated with offspring anxiety, and hirsutism was related to other offspring behavioral problems. These findings should be interpreted with caution as replication is needed in prospective cohort studies that assess PCOS and hirsutism diagnoses using medical records.

PMID: 32106995 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]