PolyCystic Ovarian Syndrome is a very common endocrine disorder seen among approximately 1 in 5 women of reproductive age.
It is an important health concern and represents a major health issue affecting young women today.
The exact cause of PCOS is unknown.
Symptoms include infrequent or absent periods, excessive body hair growth, acne, obesity and difficulty in conceiving.
Ultrasound examination may show enlarged ovaries with small fluid filled cysts. Concomitant hormonal tests may also be necessary along with the ultrasound to confirm the diagnosis.
Early diagnosis and treatment along with weight loss may reduce the risk of long-term complications such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease. By the age of 40, up to 40% of women with PCOS will have type 2 diabetes, increased cardiovascular risks and osteoporosis.
Weight loss (in obese women) and exercise improve the hormone profile, menstrual regularity and the likelihood of ovulation.
See a gynecologist specialist if you are worried about your menstrual periods, if you are experiencing infertility or if you have signs of excessive androgens such as excess facial and body hair or acne.