What is Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)?
Polycystic ovary syndrome, or PCOS, is a condition that affects women of reproductive age. It can cause irregular periods and make it harder to get pregnant. It is a common condition that can affect your fertility. If you’re trying to get pregnant, it’s important to understand the risks and what steps you can take to improve your chances of having a healthy baby. It causes the body to produce an excessive amount of androgen sex hormones, which can lead to cysts on the ovaries, difficulty having children, acne, excessive hair growth and weight gain. The condition also raises your risk for heart disease and type 2 diabetes. However, the condition often goes undiagnosed because many of its symptoms are subtle or appear gradually. And, because it’s most common in women between the ages of 20 to 39, there are often no noticeable changes until a woman is ready to have children.
We are here for women with PCOS who want to learn more about their options so they can make informed decisions about their future family plans.
What causes PCOS?
Experts aren’t completely sure what causes the condition, but they believe it can be attributed to a combination of factors, including hormone imbalances and genetics. Also, women with PCOS tend to store more fat in their bellies than in other areas of their bodies (hence why obesity is also common among sufferers).
If you have PCOS, you may notice symptoms like the ones listed below;
– Irregular periods: the most common symptom of the condition, irregular periods indicate that a woman’s body isn’t ovulating.
– Infertility: many women with PCOS have trouble becoming pregnant. According to Mayo Clinic, one in 10 women has PCOS.
– Obesity or being overweight: Women with PCOS are often overweight or obese.
– Excessive hair growth: this includes hair on the face, chest, stomach, thumbs and toes.
– Acne: Women with PCOS often have more severe episodes of acne than women without the condition.
– Dark patches of skin around the neck or underarm area.
– Thickening of the skin or soft tissue on the back of the neck
– Sleep apnea: this is a common condition that occurs when you stop breathing for short periods during sleep.
What are the risk factors?
While anyone can develop PCOS, you’re at a higher risk if you:
– Have a family history of the condition
– Have elevated levels of androgen sex hormones.
– Your obstetrician or gynaecologist may perform a blood test to check your hormone levels. If you do have PCOS, your hormonal imbalances are most likely caused by the cysts on your ovaries.
Treatment for PCOS
Your specialist obstetrician or gynaecologist may recommend that you take fertility medications to help you become pregnant. They may also prescribe oral contraceptives to regulate your menstrual cycle and relieve other symptoms. In addition, they can prescribe medications that reduce hair growth and treat acne.
You should also adopt a healthy lifestyle by doing exercises regularly and losing weight if you are obese or overweight. You should also avoid smoking and drinking alcohol excessively.
If you suspect you may have PCOS, make an appointment to see Dr Caroline Hoggenmueller. She can perform a physical examination and simple blood tests to help determine if you have the condition. In addition, if you are diagnosed with PCOS, she will provide information on how to treat the condition.
The good news is there are treatments for most of these symptoms so you can feel better about yourself today! We’re here to help if you need us—we know how hard it can be when living with PCOS isn’t easy every day. So let us take care of everything from diagnosis through treatment options and beyond so we can help give back some normalcy into your life again! Dr Caroline will work together with you every step of the way as we guide you towards feeling better than ever before! Let us take care of all your needs related to Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS). Don’t wait another minute; contact our office today for an appointment!