Evaluation of hormonal and metabolic factors related to depression in reproductive age women

Mónica Flores-Ramos, Martín Armando Burrola-Suárez, Rodrigo Guiza-Zayas, J. Miguel Enciso-Araujo, Dannia Islas-Preciado, Erika Estrada Camarena

DOI: https://doi.org/10.17711/SM.0185-3325.2020.006


Introduction. Major depressive disorder (MDD) is a prevalent disease affecting women more than men worldwide. Various factors are involved in the genesis of depression, including hormones such as testosterone and certain metabolic factors

Objective. To evaluate hormone levels and metabolic variables in women with major depression and healthy controls.

Method. A cross-sectional, comparative analytical study was conducted in 40 participants, 23 patients with an MDD diagnosis and 17 controls, all of women in reproductive age between the ages of 18 and 45. Sociodemographic variables, hormonal profile, and metabolic variables were assessed and the 17-item Hamilton Depression Scale was used to evaluate depressive symptoms.

Results. No statistically significant differences were observed between the groups in the hormonal and metabolic variables explored. Nevertheless, it was observed that the lower the testosterone levels and the higher the serum glucose levels, the more intense depressive symptoms were.

Discussion and conclusion. Testosterone is associated with a lower depressive symptoms score on the Hamilton Depression scale, suggesting a potential antidepressant effect, whereas high glucose levels are associated with a higher score on this scale. We believe that the measurement of hormonal and metabolic variables in women can contribute to a better understanding of the pathophysiology of depression.


Major depressive disorder (MDD); testosterone; glucose; hormones

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