Polycystic Ovarian SyndromePolycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) can cause elevated androgen levels in women. Researchers from the University of Vermont recently published a study in the journal Hormones and Behavior, claiming high androgen levels may cause women to feel more sexual desire to mate rather than to connect with a partner.

About 85 women with PCOS were recruited for the study. Women were placed in two groups, those exhibiting symptoms of high androgen levels and those without symptoms. Researchers further split the groups into women who sought sex for pleasure/mating and women who sought sex to connect on an emotional level with a partner. All women were tested for elevated androgen levels.

Conclusion: When women in the study were more sensitive to androgen levels, they experienced an increased sexual desire as a means of procreation or physical pleasure, but not emotional connection. Researchers believe the connection between androgen sensitivity and sexual desire could play an important role in further hormone research.

Source: Rellini AH, Stratton N, Tonani S, Santamaria V, Brambilla E, Nappi RE. Differences in sexual desire between women with clinical versus biochemical signs of hyperandrogenism in polycystic ovarian syndrome. Horm Behav. 2013 Jan;63(1):65-71. doi: 10.1016/j.yhbeh.2012.10.013. Epub 2012 Nov 2.