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Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS): Symptoms & Treatments

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) Acne

Polycystic ovary syndrome, commonly known as PCOS, is a condition that affects an estimated 1 in 10 women worldwide. Despite being very common, many people are unaware of this disorder’s symptoms, causes, and treatments. Do you know what signs to look for?

 

What is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)?

Polycystic ovary syndrome, or PCOS, is a common hormonal disorder affecting millions of women worldwide. Symptoms of PCOS can vary depending on the individual but often include infertility, weight gain, and acne.

This post will take a closer look at what PCOS is and what kind of treatments are available. We will also discuss some tips for living with PCOS and ways to manage your symptoms. Keep reading for more information!

 

What are the symptoms of PCOS?

At its core, PCOS is characterized by hormonal imbalances in the body. Hormones such as estrogen and testosterone can fluctuate excessively and cause a variety of distressing symptoms, including:

  • Irregular periods
  • Abnormal weight gain
  • Infertility
  • Acne
  • Hair growth in uncommon places on the body

 

What is the cause of PCOS?

There is no one definitive cause for PCOS, but there are certain environmental factors that can contribute to its onset. These include stress, poor diet and nutrition habits, insufficient exercise, and exposure to toxins such as pesticides or chemical pollutants.

Despite its adverse effects on many aspects of physical health and wellbeing, PCOS does not have to be a lifelong disorder. Patients can manage their symptoms with medication or surgery and lifestyle changes such as diet and exercise modifications.

 

How to get a PCOS Diagnosis

The first step in getting a proper diagnosis for PCOS is to visit your doctor for a thorough evaluation. During this appointment, your physician will ask you about your general medical history and any relevant symptoms you have been experiencing.

They may also perform a physical exam, including blood tests or other diagnostic procedures. To ensure an accurate PCOS diagnosis, it is essential to be as upfront and honest as possible with your doctor during this initial consultation.

Once they have gathered all the necessary information, they will be able to identify whether you have PCOS and create an appropriate treatment plan to address any related health issues.

By following these steps and working closely with your doctor, you can get on the path toward managing your PCOS and improving your overall quality of life.

 

Types of Tests for PCOS Diagnosis

Several different tests can be used to diagnose PCOS, each of which provides unique information about this condition’s underlying causes and symptoms.

Hormone assay

The first type of test is a hormone assay, which checks the levels of certain hormones in the body to reveal any imbalances that may contribute to developing PCOS.

This testing is done through a simple blood sample. It typically includes testosterone, progesterone, follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinizing hormone (LH), prolactin, DHEA-S, cholesterol, leptin levels, insulin, and fasting glucose.

Ultrasound

Another commonly used diagnostic test for PCOS is an ultrasound scan.

This exam uses ultrasound waves to produce images of the internal reproductive organs to check for cysts on the ovaries. Additionally, an ultrasound scan may evaluate other aspects of the reproductive system, such as uterine lining thickness and blood flow to the uterus and ovaries.

Biopsy

Another essential tool for diagnosing PCOS is an ovarian biopsy, which involves taking a small tissue sample from one or both ovaries and looking at it under a microscope. This testing provides valuable insight into areas such as estrogen receptor configuration or dysfunctional follicle development.

 

Treatments for PCOS

While there is no cure for PCOS, there are treatments that can help to manage the symptoms.

Birth control pills are often prescribed to help regulate periods and reduce excess hair growth.

Acne can be treated with topical medications or oral antibiotics.

And while there is no surefire way to prevent weight gain, a healthy diet and exercise routine can help to keep symptoms under control.

Bio-Identical Hormone Replacement Therapy

Bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) is a treatment option that can help improve PCOS symptoms. BHRT involves using hormones identical to the ones produced naturally by the body.

These hormones can help to regulate the menstrual cycle, reduce androgen levels, and improve fertility. BHRT is a safe and effective treatment option for women with PCOS.

Lifestyle Changes

If you have been diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome or PCOS, then it is likely that you will need to make some significant lifestyle changes to manage your symptoms effectively.

Diet

For women with the polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), maintaining a healthy diet is essential for managing the symptoms and preventing long-term complications. A diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins can help regulate hormone levels in the body and reduce insulin resistance.

Additionally, a nutritious diet can also help to improve blood lipid levels and encourage weight loss, which are additional factors contributing to PCOS management.

Exercise

Regular exercise is one of the most effective ways to manage the disorder. By boosting overall health and managing weight and insulin levels, exercise can help women suffering from PCOS feel better and may even reduce the risk of certain long-term complications.

Additionally, exercise can help to regulate periods, combat depression and anxiety, and improve fertility in women struggling to get pregnant due to PCOS.

Changes in daily routine

Additionally, modifications to your daily routine may be necessary to balance stress levels and promote better sleep hygiene. Ultimately, making these changes will help you manage your symptoms and improve your overall health and wellbeing.

 

Conclusion

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder that affects women of reproductive age. PCOS can cause infertility, insulin resistance, and other health problems.

There is no one-size-fits-all treatment for PCOS; the best approach depends on the individual woman’s symptoms and needs. However, several treatments are effective in treating this syndrome. These include lifestyle changes, medications, and surgery.

If you think you may have PCOS, it’s essential to see a doctor for diagnosis and treatment. Untreated PCOS can lead to long-term health problems such as diabetes and heart disease. Fortunately, many women with PCOS can manage their symptoms with a few lifestyle changes. If you are concerned about this syndrome and want a hormone specialist to address your symptoms, contact EVOLVE patient care. Our team of licensed physicians and hormone specialists can help you find the best treatment to reduce symptoms and live a healthier, happier life.

 

Sources

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/pcos/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20353443

https://www.endocrineweb.com/conditions/polycystic-ovary-syndrome-pcos/how-pcos-treated

https://www.acog.org/womens-health/faqs/polycystic-ovary-syndrome-pcos?utm_source=redirect&utm_medium=web&utm_campaign=otn

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/polycystic-ovary-syndrome-pcos

https://www.hormonecenter.net/pcos-2/

This article is for educational use, any treatment decisions should be used in consultation with a medical practitioner.

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