Objective: To examine the association of body fat distribution with risk of endometriosis in an effort to determine whether a specific somatotype is related to the disease.
Methods: We conducted a case-control study of 88 laparoscopically confirmed cases of endometriosis, identified in a specialty gynecologic practice in western New York, and 88 age-matched friend controls. Data were collected by standardized personal interview, and body measurements were taken in a standardized fashion by one interviewer. Risk of endometriosis associated with body fat distribution, as expressed by waist-to-hip and waist-to-thigh ratios, was assessed using logistic regression.
Results: For women under 30 years of age (45 cases, 46 controls), endometriosis was inversely related to both waist-to-hip ratio (odds ratio 6.18, 95% confidence interval [CI] 2.01-19.01) and waist-to-thigh ratio (odds ratio 3.64, 95% CI 1.23-10.78). This effect was not evident among women aged 30 years and older (43 cases, 42 controls).
Conclusion: Our results suggest a specific somatotype with a predominance of peripheral body fat among women with endometriosis. This finding may provide information useful in both the diagnosis and understanding of the disease etiology. (Obstet Gynecol 1993;82:545-9)
(C) 1993 The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists