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  1. #16
    Registered User kok1922's Avatar
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    Angry take it with a grain of salt

    Hi

    I haven't been around in a while - this place is so great but I've just been concentrating on other things - but I popped back on because my partner and I went and tried to get pregnant today (I did the IUI) and I needed to get some support!

    Enough about me...

    I would encourage all women to read the above article/abstract with a grain of salt. As a public health researcher, I have many questions for these folks. The first one being selection of subjects. The number of lesbians attending this one clinic is absolutely huge. We go to one of the best clinics in NYC area and I have yet to see another lesbian there. It's a little odd that they were able to find so many lesbians in one place. Fascinating, actually. Numbers are actually a huge probelm when conducting research on gays and lesbians - just finding enough of them to do a study on takes a ton of money and a ton of time. I want to know how in the world they found so many out lesbians in Spain?

    Secondly, maybe the women that sought treatment were more likely to have PCOs but it doesn't meant that ALL lesbians are more likely to have PCOs. Maybe this clinic is lesbian friendly or maybe word of mouth help set it up so lesbians with PCOs - or an inkling of PCOs go there.

    The only way to really research this correctly would be to randomly select women and ask them to be in the research study.

    I really believe that some researchers are LOOKING for a way to explain homosexuality and ignore good science.

    So, that's just my two bits. All the best to everyone.

    Kelly

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    lynnea443lynn (04-18-2011)

  3. #17
    Honarary Angel AngelRose's Avatar
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    Default Baby steps

    Good luck to you and your partner kelly, let us know how you go
    25 years old
    DX May 2003 symptoms since 1992
    jUST BEEN TOLD I WILL NEED A FULL HYSTERECTOMY B4 AGE27

  4. #18
    SoulCyster #1 KatCarney's Avatar
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    Default First Proof that PCOS More than Twice as Common in Lesbian Women

    First Proof that Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome More than Twice as Common in Lesbian Women: Presented at ESHRE

    MADRID, SPAIN -- June 30, 2003 -- Researchers have found the first evidence that a common cause of infertility in women is more prevalent amongst lesbians than heterosexuals,1 and they suggest that the biochemical disorder associated with the condition might contribute to the women's sexual orientation.

    They presented their evidence here June 30th at the 19th Annual Meeting of the European Society of Human Reproduction & Embryology.

    Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is the most common cause of ovarian dysfunction in women and is caused by an imbalance of sex hormones. One of the main features of PCOS is hyperandrogenism,2 and now that the researchers have discovered the increased prevalence of PCOS amongst lesbian women they hypothesize that hyperandrogenism could be contributing to the women's sexual orientation.

    Dr. Rina Agrawal, deputy medical director at the London Women's Clinic and The Hallam Medical Centre, and her colleagues examined 618 women who attended the clinic for fertility treatment between November 2001 and January 2003. Of these, 254 were lesbian and 364 were heterosexual women.

    The women did not know whether they had polycystic ovaries (PCO) or PCOS before attending the clinic, but 15% of them had been treated previously for symptoms relating to PCOS such as irregular periods, inability to conceive, acne or excessive body or facial hair.

    The women had a pelvic ultrasound examination on the second or third day of their menstrual cycle, and blood samples were taken to measure levels of reproductive hormones. A clinician, nurse and counsellor or clinical psychologist took details of their medical and sexual histories in three separate sessions.

    The researchers found that the prevalence of PCO was 32% in heterosexual women and 80% in lesbian women, and that the prevalence of PCOS was 14% in heterosexual women and 38% in lesbian women. The average prevalence amongst all 618 women (lesbian and heterosexual) was 52% for PCO and 24% for PCOS. This compares with European data that show that the prevalence of PCO in the general population is 22% and 10-15% for PCOS, while 40% of all women who seek fertility treatment have PCO/PCOS.

    Dr. Agrawal said: "We observed a significantly higher prevalence of PCO/PCOS in lesbian compared with heterosexual women. Our initial results are also suggestive of a significantly greater hyperandrogenism in lesbian compared with heterosexual women.

    The blood samples revealed that hormones such as testosterone, androstenedione, free testosterone index and luteinizing hormone (LH) were significantly higher, and sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG)3 was significantly lower in lesbian women compared with heterosexual women. Dr. Agrawal said: "When we compared lesbian and heterosexual women with PCOS, lesbian women had significantly higher androgens and lower SHBG compared with heterosexual women. We found a similar result in women with PCO only, but in lesbian and heterosexual women with normal ovaries, the androgens and SHBG levels were similar."

    She continued: "Our research neither suggests nor indicates that PCO/PCOS causes lesbianism, only that PCO/PCOS is more prevalent in lesbian women. We do, however, hypothesize that hyperandrogenism, which is associated with PCOS, may be one of the factors contributing to the sexual orientation of women."

    However, the researchers are quick to dismiss any idea that if this was the case, then treatments for PCOS could also be seen as a "cure" for lesbianism. Dr. Agrawal said: "In 1973 the decision to remove homosexuality from the list of mental disorders was made and since then the focus has shifted from the "cure" of homosexuality to the physical and psychological health concerns of these individuals. We do not view lesbianism as a disease that is in need of a "cure". The only aspects of health care we offer these women are reproductive health and assisted reproduction."

    Previous studies have shown a similar prevalence of sexually transmitted diseases among lesbian compared with heterosexual women, but had not investigated the effect of this on the women's Fallopian tubes. Dr. Agrawal's study showed that there was a similar incidence of Fallopian tube disease in both groups. "The importance of this finding is to make clinicians aware that sexually transmitted diseases are just as prevalent in lesbian women as in heterosexual women. Previous studies have shown that at least 70% of lesbian women have been heterosexual or bisexual previously. Sexual practices amongst the remaining 30% who have never been heterosexual means that STDs can be transmitted between women sexually."

    Dr. Agrawal concluded: "There are several challenges and gaps in the research and healthcare of homosexual people, and this in itself calls for focus and funding of this aspect of medicine. In the past 20 years only 0.1% of published articles were dedicated to the healthcare of homosexual individuals, and before 1990 homosexual people were invisible to healthcare research. Our study emphasizes the importance of treating these women in a non-judgmental and non-biased manner so that clinicians may offer them appropriate health advice. I hope that this study will provide an impetus and motivation to clinicians and reproductive endocrinologists to investigate and explore further the hypothesis outlined here."


    Abstract no: O-070 (Monday 30 June, 15.15 hrs CET, Roma room)

    REFERENCES
    1.Although PCOS is common cause of infertility in women, this does not mean that infertility is more common in lesbian women than in heterosexuals; in fact the opposite is true, and pregnancy rates are higher in lesbian compared to heterosexual women.
    2.Hyperandrogenism is caused by abnormally high concentrations of androgens (male steroid hormones in women). Symptoms range from excess facial and body hair, to baldness, acne, deepening of the voice and loss of breast tissue.
    3. SHBG is a protein that binds testosterone and other sex hormones. Women with PCOS may have normal concentrations of total testosterone, but their SHBG is lowered and therefore free testosterone concentrations are elevated, which results in symptoms related to hyperandrogenism.

    http://www.docguide.com/news/content.nsf/news/8525697700573E1885256D55004E57FD

  5. #19
    Registered User klvillon's Avatar
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    Cool

    thanks for this.....i've wondered if this were true. ever since i was diagnosed i've discovered a good number of my friends (who are lesbians, and i am one also) also have PCOS. my doctor told me it wasn't that common, but my personal experience tells me otherwise.

  6. #20
    Day Dreamin' Cyster AlyBlu's Avatar
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    Though I am straight, i always felt extremely masculine when I was younger and wonder what if! Intersting article.
    Child Free Cyster.

    Create the highest, grandest vision for your life, because you become what you believe! - Oprah Winfrey

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    Hidden Content - A Friendly, Open Board for ALL Cysters.

  7. #21
    Hairy, but not trolling Biloline's Avatar
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    Well, shooting from the hip, couldn't this just be that lesbians don't take bc as often as straight girlies do?

  8. #22
    Registered User leshia212's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    I LOVE THIS ARTICLE!!!!!!!!! just jokingly i've told people that it's the hormone problems that have made me the way that i am...but how right could i have been? lol...that's interesting...thanks for the info.

  9. #23
    Umm Hend melloyello's Avatar
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    i wonder if its to do with the high levels of testosterone that many cysters have!
    sorta the same thinking as Leshia that maybe it has to do with hormones! who knows!

  10. #24
    Re-Diagnosed! ABumpyGal's Avatar
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    Thank you, oh thank you for posting this article Kat! Seriously, it's made my day

    I'm just now dealing with my sexual/gender identity issues at age 32 and this article fits what I've been thinking about myself, personally. It seems the only people I can relate to on these things are male to female transexuals. It's all so confusing! Especially in a society where everyone wants you to fit in one category or another. I just... don't.
    Me (33)/Michael (3o)
    Together for almost nine long, happy years!

    First PCOS dx: 1989
    Supplements: One A Day Weight Smart, B Complex, Biotin, Pantothenic Acid (B5), B12, Saw Palmetto, Vit C, Vit D3, NAC, Alpha Lipoic Acid, Chromium Piconolate, Cinnamon, Magnesium, EPO, Zinc Gluconate, Green Tea
    Diet: "Modified" Zone plan


    "You don't love a woman because she is beautiful, but she is beautiful because you love her" -Anon.

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  11. #25
    Registered User joyblack's Avatar
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    Default First Proof that PCOS More than Twice as Common in Lesbian Women

    Quote Originally Posted by KatCarney
    2.Hyperandrogenism is caused by abnormally high concentrations of androgens (male steroid hormones in women). Symptoms range from excess facial and body hair, to baldness, acne, deepening of the voice and loss of breast tissue.
    3. SHBG is a protein that binds testosterone and other sex hormones. Women with PCOS may have normal concentrations of total testosterone, but their SHBG is lowered and therefore free testosterone concentrations are elevated, which results in symptoms related to hyperandrogenism.

    http://www.docguide.com/news/content.nsf/news/8525697700573E1885256D55004E57FD
    None of this is much of a surprise. Yes, if we've PCOS the chances of very high levels of free testosterone are high, hence there's a high incidence of "male" characteristics, among them beard growth, baldness, acne, low voice pitch and reduced breast tissue.
    But there's an even simpler test which indicates a tendency to these things even at birth. How many of us have our fourth (i.e. ring) finger longer than our index finger? That's a sign we've been exposed to male levels of testosterone before birth and have a much higher chance of PCOS. Most females have index fingers longer than ring fingers (the female pattern) while most PCOS women have ring fingers longer than index fingers.

  12. #26
    Registered User rocheyl's Avatar
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    I never heard that thing about the length of fingers anyone know anything else about this.

    Thanks

  13. #27
    Registered User joyblack's Avatar
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    Default First Proof that PCOS More than Twice as Common in Lesbian Women Reply to Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by rocheyl
    I never heard that thing about the length of fingers anyone know anything else about this.
    Thanks
    Google on "digit ratio" and you'll find plenty.

    In a nutshell, it goes like this:
    In women the index finger is normally longer than the ring finger.
    In men, the ring finger is normally longer than the index finger.

    It's a function of early fetal exposure to testosterone.

    If your ring finger is longer than your index finger, the chances are that your brain has also been exposed to male-type levels of testosterone during its early development as has the rest of your body.

    If you're a woman and your ring finger is longer than your index finger, the chances are high that you'll have significant male characteristics and there's also a much higher incidence of lesbianism among women with ring fingers longer than index fingers.

    FWIW, my ring fingers are both longer than my index fingers. I'm definitely heterosexual, but I do recognize a lot of male characteristics in myself -- underdeveloped breasts, male-type facial hair etc.

  14. #28
    Back again kimstagg's Avatar
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    All I can say is... WOW. Both of my ring fingers are longer than my index fingers. I also have a recessive knuckle on my ring finger. Anyone ever heard of this?

  15. #29
    Registered User joyblack's Avatar
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    Default First Proof that PCOS More than Twice as Common in Lesbian Women

    Quote Originally Posted by kimstagg
    All I can say is... WOW. Both of my ring fingers are longer than my index fingers.
    You've no idea how compulsive the examination of other people's fingers becomes :-)
    We can be XX genetically but still have male-type brains and many male physical characteristics (beard growth, etc.). The extent of masculinization varies dramatically, of course, from almost nil to very dramatic.
    Of course there are also XY individuals who have female-pattern digit ratios and considerable feminization of brain and body.
    Human beings come in endless variations!

  16. #30
    Registered User donna bee's Avatar
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    That is really interesting and confirms in my mind what I have thought for years.

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