Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal condition that affects about 6% to 8% women of reproductive age. It is diagnosed by combination including high androgen (testosterone) levels seen on blood test and clinical features including:
• Excess Androgen: Hirsutism (unwanted hair growth), acne or androgenic alopecia (scalp hair loss)
• Menstrual Dysfunction: Abnormal uterine bleeding, amenorrhea (absent periods), oligomenorrhea (infrequent periods)
• Polycystic Ovaries (as seen on a pelvic ultrasound)
The other medical terms for PCOS are as follows:
• Functional Ovarian Hyperandrogenism
• PCOD: Polycystic Ovary Disease
• Ovarian hyperthecosis
• Stein Leventhal syndrome
Essential things to know for a woman if she has PCOS or PCOD:
In the present scenario women face health issues due to many environmental factors and other aspects which might be danger to her health. Due to the rising androgens in women which are basically men hormones are the set of symptoms for PCOS.
Various Symptoms and Signs of PCOS:
• Acne: Too much testosterone production in the body and skin cells results in sebum production which leads to the cause of acne.
• Heavy bleeding during periods: Due to the hormonal imbalance and improper functioning of ovaries, heavy flow during periods is common.
• Irregular or no menstrual periods: Due to the lack of certain hormones and imbalance in the body leads to irregular or no menstrual periods in PCOS.
• Pelvic Pain: Pain in the ovary may cause due to cysts. On the lower abdomen area
• Obesity: Obesity is caused because of the excessive insulin that is produced. As a result, women easily tend to gain weight and find hard to lose weight.
• Unwanted hair growth: With the more production of male hormones or androgens like testosterone, unwanted hair at central parts of the body such as inner thighs, belly button and between breasts is experienced.
• High blood pressure: PCOS can add metabolic complications and hypertension which includes complications of kidney damage, stroke and vision problems.
• Type 2 diabetes: Due to the insulin resistance the body produces high levels of insulin which leads to type 2 diabetes.
• Thinning hair on scalp: Due to the more production of androgen causes the hair on the scalp to start thinning, mostly near the crown area. This can be also known as female pattern hair loss.
• Heart Disease: Abnormal insulin function and High blood pressure increases the risk of heart diseases.
• Unhealthy Cholesterol: With the higher prevalence of insulin resistance and obesity, cholesterol is developed in the body and these levels of cholesterol which are unhealthy contributes to cardiovascular disease.
• Difficulty in getting pregnant: With the increase in the production of testosterone ovaries do not mature and causes infertility.
• Dark, thick and patchy skin: Levels of insulin get surge due to the PCOS these higher levels of insulin may sometimes cause patches on the back of neck, in the groin area and under the arms.
These are the symptoms in 2-20% of women of childbearing age. The development of PCOS is due to the combination of environmental and genetic factors.
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