Health Related Quality of Life in Metabolically Healthy Obese Women and Female Metabolic Syndrome Patients – Influence of Endocrine Factors

Issue : Robeva, Ralitsa N., Milcheva, Boyka A. Kamenova, Teodora K., Kirilov, Georgi G., Elenkova, Atanaska P., Zacharieva, Sabina S.

USHATE “Acad. Iv. Penchev”, Department of Endocrinology, Faculty of Medicine, Medical University, Sofia


Aims: Obesity has been associated with multiple physical and psychological disturbances, but not all obese individuals are “equal.” Obese patients with a cluster of metabolic abnormalities have shown significantly higher cardiovascular morbidity than the “metabolic healthy” obese individuals (MHO). Nevertheless, whether the MHO group experiences a better health-related quality of life (HRQoL) than patients with metabolic syndrome (MS) needs to be clarified. Therefore, the present study aims to investigate the general HRQoL in women with MS and MHO and to examine the possible influence of several common endocrine factors.

Methods: A total of 110 obese female patients (75 with MS and 35 with MHO) and 30 healthy lean women filled in an SF36v2 HRQoL questionnaire. The anthropometric, metabolic, and hormonal characteristics of the patients were examined. Data regarding concomitant endocrine diseases were also collected.

Results: MHO women showed significantly reduced physical HRQoL component summary in comparison to lean women (p<0,001), although better than that of obese patients with metabolic syndrome (p=0,022). Polycystic ovarian syndrome did not further reduce the impaired HRQoL of obese women. Increased HOMA-IR was related to lower vitality (p=0,025), while increased urine-free cortisol levels were associated with worse physical component summary scores (p=0,004) among obese women.

Conclusions: Obesity might deteriorate women’s physical and mental well-being regardless of the presence of metabolic disturbances. However, the development of metabolic syndrome could decrease the physical HRQoL scores. The influence of cortisol secretion on the HRQoL in obesity needs further investigation.

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Journal of the Bulgarian Society of Endocrinology

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