Prevalence of premature ovarian failure and premature menopause in refugee and immigrant women in the U.S. compared to that of women born in the United States
Deering, Victoria Ann
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OBJECTIVE: Premature ovarian failure is a disease with many far reaching and serious consequences. Little is known about the complete etiology of the disease or what women may be at an increased risk for developing it. We sought to evaluate the prevalence of premature ovarian failure among women born in the United States and women not born in the United States who were patients of Boston Medical Center. We compared the prevalence of POF in these two groups to evaluate any relationships that may exist between birthplace and premature ovarian failure. METHODS: We collected data from the data warehouse of Boston Medical Center. We used data from women who had an FSH test done between the ages of 18 and 40 before June 30, 2013 as the control. We also compiled data of women who had an FSH level over 15mIU/ml as well as those who had diagnoses in SDK and Logician. Birthplaces data was also compiled for those women who had an FSH level>15mIU/ml. RESULTS: Women born outside of the U.S had a slightly higher prevalence of POF when compared to women born in the United States. Data analysis showed a significant difference among the two groups with p<0.0001 for each group. When birthplace data was compiled, Haiti had the highest number of women with FSH>15mIU/ml with Cape Verde and the Dominican Republic having the next highest amounts of women. CONCLUSION: Our study highlights the possible relationship that exists between premature ovarian failure and birthplace. This was a preliminary study to gather data that may be used in future, more specific studies to be done on the topic. These future studies should further investigate the reason this relationship exists, other causes that may be associated with premature ovarian failure, and further analysis of the prevalence of POF in various areas of the world.