Let’s Learn About Polycystic Ovary Syndrome {PCOS}

At its heart, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal imbalance. Specifically, women with PCOS have higher than normal levels of androgens or male hormones.

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PCOS is usually thought of as a reproductive disorder; it affects 10% of women of childbearing age and usually starts after puberty. But some of its effects seem to have little to do with fertility.

“People can get multiple symptoms for multiple reasons,” says Karen Carlson, MD, assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. “PCOS is a syndrome with a spectrum of symptoms that you can get, but not everybody gets everything.” (And, of course, not everyone with some of these common symptoms has PCOS.)

Becoming familiar with the symptoms can mean earlier diagnosis and treatment, which in turn might help ward off some of the potential long-term complications of PCOS. Infertility isn’t the only concern–women with PCOS also have an increased risk of type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and endometrial cancer.

Source: health.com

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