The aim was to compare the effects of a traditional therapy (an oral estroprogestagen) to those of a novel treatment (a low-dose combination of generics) in adolescent girls with androgen excess. In an open-label trial over 1 yr, 34 adolescents (age, 16 yr; body mass index, 23 kg/m2) with hyperinsulinemic androgen excess and without pregnancy risk were randomized to receive daily ethinyl estradiol-cyproterone acetate (EE-CA; Diane 35 Diario) or a low-dose combination of pioglitazone 7.5 mg/d, flutamide 62.5 mg/d, and metformin 850 mg/d (PioFluMet). Markers of androgen excess, C-reactive protein, high molecular weight adiponectin, lipids, carotid intima media thickness, body composition (absorptiometry), abdominal fat partitioning (magnetic resonance imaging), and gene expression in longitudinal biopsies of sc adipose tissue at the abdominal level (RT-PCR) were assessed at baseline and after 1 yr. EE-CA and low-dose PioFluMet reduced androgen excess comparably, but had divergent effects on C-reactive protein, high molecular weight adiponectin, lipids, carotid intima media thickness, lean mass, abdominal and visceral fat, and on the expression of CD163, leptin, TNF-like weak inducer of apoptosis receptor, and angiopoietin-like protein 4, respectively, related to macrophage activation, fat accretion, inflammation, and lipoprotein metabolism in adipose tissue. All these divergences pointed to a healthier condition on low-dose PioFluMet. EE-CA and PioFluMet are similarly effective in reversing androgen excess over 1 yr, but low-dose PioFluMet is superior in reversing inflammatory, metabolic, and cardiovascular anomalies that are often associated with androgen excess.
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