PCOS – Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
Classically, we thought of PCOS primarily as an infertility disorder or as a
cosmetic annoyance, but we now know it’s also a metabolic disorder and a
serious long-term health concern.
Polycystic ovary syndrome, widely known as PCOS is a condition characterised
by chronic failure of ovulation (anovulation) and excessive production of
male hormones (hyperandrogenism). It is characterised by a varied combination
of clinical (oligo/amenorrhoea, hirsutism and obesity) biochemical (increased
S.LH and androgens) and sonographic (enlarged polycystic ovaries) along with
insulin resistance and compensatory hyperinsulinemia.
The heterogeneous nature of the disease, along with lack of precise diagnostic
criteria has made the determination of true epidemiology of PCOS difficult.
Symptoms of PCOS:
- Weight gain and trouble losing it.
- Extra hair on face /chest/belly.
- Thinning of hair on scalp.
- Insulin resistance/Type 2 Diabetes.
- Irregular periods/no/heavy periods.
- Fertility issues/ not getting pregnant
- Depression/sleep disorder/anxiety.
Tests and diagnosis of PCOS:
There is no single test to determine the presence of PCOS.A combination of medical history, physical examination, blood tests, ultrasound findings help to diagnose the same.
Management should consist of addressable of immediate complaints as well as planning preventive strategies for long term health sequale.
Healthy diet and exercise is the first line of treatment recommended. A 5 to 7 percent reduction of body weight over six-month period can lower insulin and androgen levels restoring ovulation and fertility in more than 75 percent of patients.
Birth control pills to regulate periods.
Diabetic medicine if necessary.
Fertility medicine if pregnancy desired.
Cosmetic treatment/spironolactone for hirsutism.
Although the cause of PCOS are unclear, early diagnosis is important; if you think you may have PCOS, consult a doctor. If you have already been diagnosed, make sure to eat healthy and exercise.