Hormonal status of menstrual cycles in female athletes

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Bibliographic Details
Title translated into German:Status der den Menstruationszyklus regelnden Hormone bei Sportlerinnen
Author:Kita, N.; Arao, T.; Aoki, K.; Sugawara, I.; Matsuda, K.; Tsutsumi, T.; Yamada, Y.; Goto, Y.; Hoshi, A.
Published in:Bulletin of the Physical Fitness Research Institute
Published:1989, 71 , S. 25-34, Lit.
Format: Publications (Database SPOLIT)
Publication Type: Journal article
Media type: Print resource
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Identification number:PU199705204894

Author's abstract

Several reports have indicated that female athletes are more pone to menstrual cycle disorders during an intensive physical training. It is also suggested that menstrual cycle alterations induced by exercise may be resulted from imbalances in the menstrual cycle hormones. Therefore, even if athletes show normal menstrual cycle length, complex interactions of menstrual cycle hormones in athletes may be different from that in controls. The purpose of this investigation was to compare the changes in concentrations of plasma LH, FSH, estradiol, progesterone, prolactin, and testosterone during the menstrual cycle in athletes and controls. The results of this study are summarized as follows; 1) There was no significant difference in menstrual cycle length, or follicular phase length between the athletes and the controls, but length of luteal phase was significantly (p<0.05) shorter in a subgroup of athletes consisted of distance runners and high jumpers than in the controls. 2) No significant difference in plasma LH was found between the athletes and the controls in any phase. However, the peak levels of plasma FSH were significantly (p<0.05) lower in the controls than in the athletes. 3) The levels of ovarian hormones in the luteal phase were significantly lower in the athletes than in the controls (estradiol: p<0.05, progesterone: p<0.01). Within the athletes, they were significantly lower in the subgroup than in a thrower group (estradiol, progesterone: p<0.05). 4) There was no significant difference in plasma prolactin or testosterone between the athletes and the controls in any phase. 5) Significant positive correlations were found between peak levels of plasma FSH in follicular phase and peak levels of ovarian hormones in luteal phase (estradiol: r=0.495, p>0.05; progesterone: r=0.584, p>0.05). In conclusion, the present study seems to suggest that ovarian function is surpressed by intensive physical training and that the level of suppression depends on the severity of physical training. The ovarial hypofunction in the athletes seems to be caused by decreaed FSH secretion in the follicular phase due to the depression of pituitary function. Verf.-Referat