HealthDay News — Menstrual dysfunction is common in girls with recently diagnosed type 2 diabetes, and does not improve with two years of anti-hyperglycemic treatment, according to a study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

Megan M. Kelsey, M.D., from the University of Colorado School of Medicine in Aurora, and colleagues used data from the Treatment Options for Type 2 Diabetes in Youth study in order to characterize reproductive function in 190 girls not on hormonal contraception and those at least one-year post-menarche and with youth-onset type 2 diabetes.

The researchers found that 21 percent of participants had irregular menses (no more than three periods in the prior six months).

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Those with irregular menses had higher body mass index (P = 0.001), aspartate aminotransferase (P = 0.001), free androgen index (P = 0.0003), and total testosterone (P = 0.01), as well as lower sex-hormone binding globulin (P = 0.004) and estradiol (P = 0.01). These findings persisted after adjusting for body mass index. Treatment group had no effect on menses or sex steroids at 12 or 24 months. Furthermore, there was no association between sex steroids and measures of insulin sensitivity or secretion.

“It’s important for girls with type 2 diabetes to be assessed for menstrual problems,” Kelsey said in a statement. “Infrequent periods can be associated with heavy and painful periods, increased risk for fatty liver disease, fertility problems, and long-term increased risk for endometrial cancer.”

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