Polycystic ovary syndrome is a disease which affects a woman’s menstrual cycle, hormones, fertility, heart, and can affect a woman’s appearance. Women with polycystic ovary syndrome usually have higher levels of androgens, occasionally referred to as male hormones even though both genders produce them, irregular or missed periods, and many small cysts in the ovaries. While the exact cause of polycystic ovary syndrome is unknown, it is believed to stem from a hormonal imbalance. Insulin is also believed to be a factor. In fact, increased insulin levels have shown to increase a woman’s number of androgens. High levels of androgens can cause a woman to experience acne, excessive hair growth, problems with ovulating, and weight gain.
Symptoms commonly vary from woman to woman, however, they usually include:
While polycystic ovary syndrome is incurable, there are many ways to manage the disorder. Changes in a woman’s lifestyle can help address issues of weight gain and oral contraceptives can help to regulate a woman’s hormones. Fertility medications can help a woman with polycystic ovary syndrome ovulate if she wishes to become pregnant and medications are available to treat the excess hair growth and extra androgens. If you are concerned that you might have polycystic ovary syndrome, our office can help. Contact us right away.
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