F.A. Bello1 and A.O Odeku2

  1. Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, College of Medicine, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria.
  2. Adeola Odeku Ultrasound Centre, Kongi, New Bodija, Ibadan, Nigeria.


Dr. Folasade A. Bello
Dept. of Obstetrics and Gynaecology,
University College Hospital,
PMB 5116, Ibadan,
E-mail: dr.nikebello@yahoo.com
Phone: +2348037084505


Polycystic ovaries (PCO) are described on ultrasound scan as the “presence of 12 or more follicles in each ovary measuring 2–9 mm in diameter, and/or increased ovarian volume (>10 ml)”1. Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) or disease (PCOD) is diagnosed when polycystic ovaries are associated with chronic anovulation and clinical and/or biochemical androgen excess (typically featured as oligoamenorrhoea and hirsutism/acne, respectively). The Rotterdam criteria1 for diagnosis require any two of the three features. Unilaterality does not affect diagnosis; neither does the location of the cysts in the ovary.

PCOS is associated with infertility, as well as obesity, insulin resistance and hyperinsulinaemia, leading to impaired glucose tolerance1. Obesity and hyperinsulinaemia individually result in increased androgen production1. In most women, management includes lifestyle modifications towards weight loss. Oral hypoglycaemic agents help to improve insulin sensitivity; some women start to have regular periods with the use of metformin only2. PCOS is a diagnosis of medical interest, as associations with important noncommunicable diseases have been made—notably, the metabolic syndrome. This comprises: insulin resistance, obesity, hypertension and dyslipidaemia, which significantly increase the woman’s risk of
cardiovascular disease3. This makes the evaluation of PCOS in the study environment of a wider interest beyond infertility.

Prevalence of polycystic ovarian syndrome is up to 10-26% of reproductive age group women in the Western world4,5, but only 0.6% of reproductive agegroup gynaecological cases was reported from Nigeria6. Polycystic ovaries (PCO) were seen on ultrasound scans in 33% of the previously referenced population in which 26% were diagnosed with PCOS5.

This study aimed to document the prevalence of polycystic ovaries amongst women who had gynaecological ultrasound scans at an ultrasound diagnostic centre in Ibadan, Nigeria.

This was a retrospective review of 671 gynaecological transvaginal scans (TVS) performed over a year at a female-reproductive health ultrasound diagnostic centre in Ibadan, Nigeria. All obstetric TVSs were excluded. All scans were performed with a 5.0 MHz or 6.0 MHz transvaginal probe (Hitachi Aloka Medical Ltd., Tokyo, Japan and Chison Medical Imaging Co. Ltd., Wuxi City, Jiang Su Province, China, respectively). Probes were sheathed in lubricated latex condoms before use. Data were analysed with IBM SPSS Statistics 20 by simple frequencies and means.