How to recognize PCOS: Results of a web-based survey at

Ning Ning, Adam Balen, Paul R. Brezina, Milton Leong, Zeev Shoham, Edward E. Wallach, Yulian Zhao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


This retrospective evaluation of a web-based survey posted from 1 to 30 September 2010 was to determine which diagnostic tools physicians are currently utilizing to diagnose polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). Responses from 262 IVF centres in 68 countries are included in the study. Providers used various diagnostic criteria to diagnose PCOS, including the Rotterdam criteria (82%), National Institutes of Health criteria (8%), Androgen Excess Society 2006 criteria (3%) and other classification systems (7%). Many providers utilized diagnostic tools not necessarily included in traditional classification systems: 58% of respondents evaluated LH/FSH ratio in addition to androgen concentrations to define patients with PCOS; physicians also commonly obtain measurement of anti-Müllerian hormone (22%) and impaired glucose tolerance (74%) in diagnosing PCOS. Many respondents (64%) felt that polycystic-appearing ovaries on ultrasound with anovulation and a normal serum prolactin should be adequate criteria to diagnose PCOS. In conclusion, while the majority of centres (82%) uses the Rotterdam criteria to diagnose PCOS, other criteria and diagnostic tools are commonly used in evaluating patients with suspected PCOS. This study highlights the need for continual re-evaluation of PCOS diagnostic criteria with an ultimate goal of developing a consensus definition for the disorder in the future.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)500-505
Number of pages6
JournalReproductive biomedicine online
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2013


  • LH/FSH ratio
  • PCOS
  • androgen
  • diagnosis
  • impaired glucose tolerance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Developmental Biology


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