Polycystic ovarian syndrome is the most common endocrine disorder affecting the woman of reproductive age. It affects about 12-18% of woman of reproductive age. The cause of PCOS is not fully understood but genetics play a major role and PCOS seems to run in families.
Woman with PCOS may have enlarged ovaries that contain multiple small follicles.
Common Symptoms of PCOS/PCOD:
The most common symptoms associated with polycystic ovaries are
Irregular periods-often women with PCOS have fewer than nine periods a year, some women have no periods, other have very heavy bleeding.
Scalp hair loss.
Elevated levels of male hormones leading to extra hair on the face and body, more hair in chest, belly & back.
Excess weight gain and trouble in losing weight.
Fertility problems- Many women with PCOS have anovulation, this can lead to difficulty in getting pregnant.
Women with polycystic ovaries have high level of insulin or male hormones. The cause of this is not clear but insulin resistance is the key problem behind this syndrome.
Diagnosis of PCOS:
PCOS can be diagnosed by:
Detailed medical history and physical examination.
Glucose tolerance test.
Lipid profile test.
Hormone level Test.
Early diagnosis is important to prevent the development of long term health problems like diabetes. Women with polycystic ovaries are more likely to have increased risk of developing diabetes, cardiovascular risks, obesity, endometrial cancer, high cholesterol levels, stroke.
PCOD is a long term condition and long term management is needed to avoid associated health problems.
Management of PCOS:
Life style modification – increase your physical activity and eating a healthy and balanced diet.
Weight reduction- 5 to 10% weight loss can help in restoring normal hormonal production; reduce symptoms and long term risks such as diabetes.
Medical treatment with hormones or medication.
A multidisciplinary approach is the best way to manage and treat PCOS. Early diagnoses and management is important to prevent the development of long term health problems.