Primary ovarian insufficiency (POI) is the condition of intermittent or permanent gonadal insufficiency that occurs in women before the age of 40. We describe three cases of POI referred to the outpatient endocrinology clinic of a university hospital. The three patients met diagnostic criteria for POI and were managed by specific approaches tailored to individualized goals. In the first case, the main concern was fertility and the reproductive prognosis. The second patient was a carrier of a common genetic cause of POI: premutation of the FMR1 gene. The third case was a patient diagnosed with a POI and established osteoporosis, a common complication of estrogen deprivation. This study reports the treatment and follow-up of these cases, with an emphasis on relevant aspects of individualized management, alongside a brief literature review.
A diagnosis of POI should be considered in patients presenting with amenorrhea or irregular menses and high serum follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) levels before age 40 years.
Patients with POI without an established cause, especially in familial cases, should be tested for FMR1 mutations.
Estrogen/progestin replacement therapy is indicated since diagnosis until at least the estimated age of menopause, and is the cornerstone for maintaining the good health of breast and urogenital tract and for primary or secondary osteoporosis prevention in POI.
Fertility should be managed through an individualized approach based on patient possibilities, such as egg or embryo donation and ovarian cryopreservation; pregnancy can occur spontaneously in a minority of cases.
Women with POI should be carefully monitored for cardiovascular risk factors.