“PCOS is a common endocrine condition affecting 6-21% of reproductive-aged women and it can be associated with a wide range of reproductive, metabolic and psychological side effects,” says Dr Moran.
“Depression, anxiety and inflammation are common side effects experienced by women with PCOS, and vitamin D deficiency has been associated with both mood disorders and inflammation in the general population. So we wanted to investigate the relationship between vitamin D deficiency and PCOS,” she says.
Dr Moran says they found PCOS is not directly linked to vitamin D deficiency.
“We found for the first time that there is an association between vitamin D levels with both depression and inflammation in overweight women, regardless of whether they have PCOS or not,” says Dr Moran.
“We also found that vitamin D deficiency was common in women generally and there were no differences in vitamin D levels between women with and without PCOS,” she says.
Dr Moran says these findings support further research into treating depression with vitamin D supplements, particularly in women with PCOS, and provides an important insight into this serious condition.
“Further research is needed into the link between vitamin D, inflammation and depression in order to develop the best prevention and treatment measures, but this is an important finding,” she says.
The findings of this research were published in the journal Gynecological Endocrinology.