Eftychia Koukkou

Elena Venizelou Hospital, Athínai, Attica, Greece

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Publications (13)34.64 Total impact

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    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objective: Adequate dietary iodine intake is necessary for normal thyroid gland function at all times, and most particularly during pregnancy. Increased iodine loss is cited, among other factors, as responsible for the increased iodine demand in this period. Our aim was to compare renal iodine excretion between women during all three pregnancy trimesters with that of their spouses and thereby to estimate the iodine intake in an a large sample of pregnant women in urban areas in Greece. Design: Four hundred twenty-four healthy pregnant women were included prospectively (residents of Athens n=218, residents of Patras n=206). The spouses of 177 of these women following the same diet were also studied. Determinations included serum FT4, TSH and aTPO and urinary iodine excretion (UIE). Results: No difference was found either in median UIE throughout pregnancy or between the UIE of the pregnant women and their spouses during the trimesters. Throughout pregnancy, mild iodine deficiency was noted and was classified as mild in 60%, moderate in 30% and severe in 10% of the women studied. Users of iodized salt had significantly higher median UIE compared with non-users. Serum FT4 levels decreased and TSH increased as pregnancy progressed. Conclusions: Our study indicates that renal iodine excretion is not increased during pregnancy. This finding needs to be confirmed by further investigation in other populations with different iodine intakes. Thus, increased iodine requirements in pregnancy are possibly due to extra-renal causes. The population of pregnant women in Greek urban areas is mildly-and often moderately and severely-iodopenic and needs to be treated accordingly.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2014 · Hormones (Athens, Greece)
  • Kostas B Markou · Eftychia G Koukkou
    No preview · Article · Aug 2012 · Journal of Nutrition
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Thyroid hormone, requiring adequate maternal iodine intake, is critical for neurodevelopment in utero. Perchlorate and, less so, thiocyanate decrease uptake of iodine into the thyroid gland by competitively inhibiting the sodium/iodide symporter (NIS). It remains unclear whether environmental perchlorate exposure adversely affects thyroid function in first-trimester pregnant women. Cross-sectional. 134 pregnant women from Athens, Greece, at mean ± SD 10·9 ± 2·3 weeks' gestation. Urinary iodide, perchlorate, and thiocyanate and thyroid function tests were measured. The median urinary iodide was 120 μg/l. Urinary perchlorate levels were detectable in all women: median (range) 4·1 (0·2-118·5) μg/l. Serum thyroperoxidase antibodies (TPO Ab) were detectable in 16% of women. Using Spearman's rank correlation analyses, there was no correlation between urinary perchlorate concentrations and serum TSH, although inverse correlations were seen between urine perchlorate and free T3 and free T4 values. In univariate analyses, urine thiocyanate was positively correlated with serum TSH, but was not associated with serum free T3 or free T4. Urine perchlorate was positively correlated with gestational age. In multivariate analyses adjusting for urinary iodide concentrations, urine thiocyanate, gestational age, maternal age and TPO Ab titres, urine perchlorate was not a significant predictor of thyroid function. Low-level perchlorate and thiocyanate exposure is ubiquitous, but, in adjusted analyses, is not associated with alterations in thyroid function tests among mildly iodine-deficient Greek women in the first trimester of pregnancy.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2012 · Clinical Endocrinology
  • No preview · Article · Apr 2012 · Hormones (Athens, Greece)
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Elite male artistic gymnasts (AG) are exposed to high levels of physical and psychological stress during adolescence and experience a significant late maturation in both linear growth and pubertal development. The aim of the present study was to determine the impact of intensive physical training on the adult final height in elite male AG. This study is unique in character, as all variables were measured on the field of competition. The study was prospective and longitudinal; however, the current analysis of data is cross-sectional. Data from 86 elite male AG were obtained during the gymnastics competitions of European and World Championships. Clinical evaluation included height and weight measurements, as well as assessment of pubic hair and genital development according to Tanner's stages of pubertal development. The laboratory investigation included determination of skeletal maturation. All athletes completed a questionnaire that included questions on personal (onset and intensity of training, number of competitions per year) and family data (paternal and maternal heights). Male AG were below the 50th percentile for both final height and weight. Elite male AG had final height standard deviation score (SDS) lower than their genetic predisposition. Final height SDS was correlated positively with target height SDS (r = 0.430, p < 0.001) and weight SDS (r = 0.477, p < 0.001) and negatively to the intensity of training (r = -0.252, p = 0.022). The main factors influencing final height, by multiple regression analysis were weight SDS (p < 0.001) and target height SDS (p = 0.003). In elite maleAG, final height falls short of genetic predisposition, still well within normal limits. Considering medical and psychological risks in general, and based on the results of this research project, the International Federation of Gymnastics has increased the age limit for participants in international gymnastics competitions by 1 year.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2012 · Journal of pediatric endocrinology & metabolism: JPEM
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    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to determine the impact of intensive training on adult final height in elite female rhythmic and artistic gymnasts. The study included 215 rhythmic gymnasts (RG) and 113 artistic gymnasts (AG). AG were below the 50th percentile, while RG were taller than average. Final adult height was lower than target height in AG, while in RG, it exceeded target height. AG started training earlier than RG (p<0.001) and reported lower intensity of training (p<0.001). RG were taller than AG, with higher target height, greater Δ final height-target height and lower body fat and BMI (p<0.001). Using multiple regression analysis, the main factors influencing final height were weight SDS (p<0.001), target height SDS (p<0.001) and age of menarche (p<0.001) for RG, and weight SDS (p<0.001) and target height SDS (p<0.001) for AG. In both elite female RG and AG, genetic predisposition to final height was not disrupted and remained the main force of growth. Although in elite RG genetic predisposition for growth was fully preserved, in elite female AG final adult height falls shorter than genetically determined target height, though within the standard error of prediction.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2012 · Hormones (Athens, Greece)
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of intensive physical exercise and acute psychological stress during high level athletic competition as reflected on the levels of salivary cortisol in elite artistic gymnasts (AGs). The study included 239 AGs (142 females-97 males) who participated in the European Championship of Gymnastics in 2006 and 81 adolescents (40 females-41 males), matched for age, as controls. All athletes participated voluntarily in all or parts of the study, providing samples or data for each of the variables measured. Height, weight, body fat, lean body mass (LBM), bone age and Tanner stage of puberty were assessed and data concerning the time of thelarche, adrenarche and menarche as well as, the onset and the intensity (hours per week) of training were obtained. Saliva samples were collected, the morning before training and in the afternoon shortly after the competition. From controls, the saliva samples were collected in the morning. Cortisol concentrations were measured using a chemiluminescence method. Acute stress was assessed using a questionnaire designed for the study. No difference was found between morning and afternoon salivary cortisol levels in both male and female AGs (females: AM: 15.45±7.45nmol/l vs PM: 15.73±9.38nmol/l; males: AM: 10.21±5.52nmol/l vs PM: 9.93±13.8nmol/l, p>0.05). Female AGs presented higher levels of morning salivary cortisol than female controls (p<0.05). Both male and female AGs had higher degree of psychological stress in comparison with controls (p<0.001, p<0.013, respectively). Female AGs had higher morning and afternoon salivary cortisol levels (p<0.01, p<0.01, respectively) and higher degree of stress (p<0.003) than males. In elite AGs the diurnal rhythm of salivary cortisol has been abolished, probably due to the strenuous training and competition conditions. Female AGs presented higher levels of morning salivary cortisol and psychological stress compared to both male AGs and female controls. The long term consequences of these modifications of the HPA axis remain to be elucidated.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2010 · Steroids
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: AIM. To elucidate the dynamics of FSH, LH, prolactin (PRL), TSH and insulin secretion in women with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) treated with metformin (MET). In a prospective, controlled and randomised trial, 32 women with PCOS and 32 with normal cycle were recruited to receive MET (850 mg b.i.d.) or placebo (n: 16 for each subgroup) for an average of 40 days. Pituitary function and insulin secretion were assessed before and after intervention by GnRH-TRH tests and oral glucose tolerance test induced insulin response. Basal and area under the response curve (AURC) LH values were higher in PCOS than in normal controls before MET and declined following treatment in the former group (P < 0.05). Ovulatory PCOS responders had lower basal LH, AURC(LH) and AURC(PRL) values during MET than anovulatory cases (P < 0.05 for all) and AURCins was lower in ovulatory than anovulatory PCOS before and on MET (P < 0.02-P < 0.05), with a rise of QUICKY index in the former group during MET treatment (P < 0.05). FSH and TSH were similar. MET administration lowered LH activity in all PCOS women and in ovulatory responders and also compromised PRL stimulated secretion in the latter cases. These findings were indicative of an effect of MET on pituitary activity.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2009 · Gynecological Endocrinology
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In this large series of 349 unselected men, no significant relationship between body mass index and total sperm count was found. Thus, the association of body mass index and sperm count reported in some studies was not confirmed.
    No preview · Article · Mar 2009 · Fertility and sterility
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    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Iodine deficiency (ID) is still a major universal health problem. Iodine deficiency disorders (IDDs) affect people of all ages, among whom the most vulnerable are children and adolescents. The aim of the present study was to assess the long-term effects on growth and pubertal development of correcting severe ID in areas of Azerbaijan between 1999 and 2000. Iodized oil was administered orally to 293,000 children, aged 6-16 years. Among those, 364 children were randomly selected and were examined 1 year before the administration of iodized oil (Group I-neg, iodine negative) and 295 children (Group I-Rx, iodine treated) were examined 4 years (Group I-R x 4, iodine treated 4 years later; n = 173) or 5 years (Group I-R x 5, iodine treated 5 years later; n = 122) after the last dose of iodide. In Group I-neg the median urine iodine concentration (UIC) (mcg/L) was 36 (mean: 36.272 +/- 11.036) and increased significantly (p < 0.001) in Group I-R x 4: 188 (mean: 230.969 +/- 155.818) and in Group I-R x 5: 175 (mean: 201.176 +/- 130.369). The prevalence of goiter was 99% in Group I-neg and 2% in Group I-R x 4. Children in Group I-Rx had a greater standard deviation score (SDS) for height (-0.1364 +/- 1.279, n = 294) than children in Group I-neg (-0.5019 +/- 1.17, n = 363) (p < 0.001, t = -3.817), which was more significant for boys. SDS for weight was similar in both groups (Group I-neg: -0.17 +/- 0.78, n = 363; Group I-Rx: -0.115 +/- 0.917, n = 294). The rate of puberty development as judged by the development of breast and pubic hair was normalized in both sexes after the correction of ID. Our results demonstrate that long-term correction of severe ID leads to sustained improvement of linear growth accompanied by a normalization of the time of onset of pubertal development for both sexes.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2008 · Thyroid
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    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To report on a unique case of hypogonadism associated with excessive carotene intake in a young male athlete. A 20-year-old patient presented with a gradual decline in muscular and physical activity, sexual interest and erectile ability associated with a high in carotene and low in animal fat diet of his own design a year prior to the clinical manifestations. Clinically, he presented with very overt signs of carotene excess: his palms and soles were yellow. Moreover, 2 weeks after normalization of his diet, carotene B levels were at the upper end of the normal range. Repeated stimulation tests of hypothalamic, pituitary and testicular function were performed before and at 3, 6 and 12 months after the introduction of a balanced diet. Very low basal and stimulated values for gonadotropins and gonadal steroids were found at the initial evaluation with a progressive recovery shown after months of a balanced diet and carotene B restoration. Complete androgen secretion and sexual response recovery were observed only after 9-12 months from diagnosis. This is the first report associating excessive carotene intake with a hypothalamic form of hypogonadism in a young man.
    Preview · Article · Aug 2006 · Asian Journal of Andrology
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    Preview · Article · Jan 2005 · Journal of Andrology
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To assess the effect of treatment with a combination of the antiestrogen tamoxifen citrate and the androgen testosterone undecanoate on sperm variables and pregnancy incidence in men with idiopathic oligozoospermia and couple subfertility. Prospective, randomized, placebo-controlled trial. Clinical research in a tertiary care academic hospital. Two hundred twelve men with idiopathic oligozoospermia and 82 normozoospermic men with female factor subfertility. Oligozoospermic patients were randomly assigned to two treatment groups with tamoxifen citrate, 20 mg/d, and testosterone undecanoate, 120 mg/d (n = 106) or placebo treatment (n = 106) for 6 months. Normozoospermic men were followed for the same period. Couple counseling was part of the intervention in all groups. Pregnancy incidence and sperm characteristics after 3 and 6 months on medication and 3 months after the end of the trial. In the active treatment group, total sperm count (median [25th, 75th percentile], 27.1 x 10(6) cells/mL [9.4, 54.0 x 10(6) cells/mL] at baseline and 61.5 x 10(6) cells/mL [28.2, 119.6 x 10(6) cells/mL] at 6 months), progressive motility (mean [+/-SD], 29.7% +/- 12.0% at baseline and 41.6% +/- 13.1% at 6 months), and normal morphology (mean, 41.2% +/- 14.0% at baseline and 56.6% +/- 11.5% at 6 months) were noted. No marked changes were observed in placebo recipients or normozoospermic men. The incidence of spontaneous pregnancy was 33.9% in the active treatment group and 10.3% in the placebo group (36 vs. 11 pregnancies), with a relative risk of 3.195 (95% CI, 2.615 to 3.765). Treatment with tamoxifen citrate and testosterone undecanoate improved sperm variables and led to a higher incidence of pregnancy in couples with subfertility related to idiopathic oligozoospermia.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2003 · Fertility and Sterility