Polycystic Ovary Syndrome: How to control vicious cycle of symptoms

obgyn, uterus, fibroids, surgery, bleeding, period, Polycystic Ovary Syndrome

As a society, we’ve gotten much better at discussing women’s health over the last few decades. Women are taken more seriously when they speak about issues from period discomfort to postpartum depression to body pain and beyond. Despite this, it seems as though Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) still lies on the periphery, despite the fact that nearly 10 percent of women of reproductive age around 10 million women – suffer from it.

Think you may have PCOS? Don’t suffer alone. Kevin Hooker, MD of Lake Havasu OB/GYN Care can help you determine if you have this syndrome and will create a custom treatment plan to help control your PCOS symptoms.

What is PCOS?

While the exact cause of PCOS is unknown, we do know that women with the condition have an imbalance of reproductive hormones. Symptoms can manifest in different ways, but one of the most common is the formation of many fluid-filled sacs on the ovaries, also known as cysts. Hence we get the term Polycystic Ovary Syndrome.

PCOS is traditionally associated with increased androgen production. Although known as “male hormones,” androgens are produced by both males and females. When production increases, androgens impact the ovaries’ ability to release eggs properly. The distress this causes to the ovaries can lead to cyst formation.

PCOS Symptoms

Many women have PCOS for years without knowing it. This is largely due to the fact that PCOS symptoms are common enough that they can be associated with other diseases and syndromes. In fact, PCOS is often diagnosed only after a woman experiences infertility, the most significant symptom. Other symptoms include:

If you have any of these symptoms, you may want to make an appointment with Dr. Hooker. He can evaluate your symptoms, determine if they are caused by PCOS, and work with you to manage the condition.

Managing PCOS at Home

At this time, there is no known cure for PCOS. However, there are ways to manage the syndrome and eliminate many of the worst symptoms. At-home remedies are largely centered around lowering insulin levels. Excess insulin, which is often caused by high blood sugar levels, leads to an increase in androgen production. Here’s what you can do at home after diagnosis to manage your condition:

Managing PCOS Medically

Medical treatments can be divided primarily on what they aim to correct. The main areas of focus are regulating your menstrual cycle, ensuring proper ovulation, and addressing either thinning hair or excess hair growth.

To regulate your menstrual cycle, the doctor may recommend using a combination of birth control pills instead of just one. Birth controls pills with estrogen and progesterone can help lower androgen production.

Ovulation help comes largely from medication. The breast cancer medication letrozole may stimulate the ovaries and restore the proper release of eggs. Type 2 diabetes medication can help control insulin levels as well.

When it comes to hair growth or loss, you can tackle the source of the hair growth/loss or the hair itself. Treatments in this category aim to reduce the effects and strength of androgens (which produce excess body and facial hair) or to stimulate your hair follicles’ ability to grow new hair.

If you believe you have PCOS or have symptoms that mirror those of PCOS, you don’t have to suffer through it. Dr. Hooker can diagnose you and help you get back on track. Call or make an appointment request online today!

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