|Polycystic ovary syndrome|
Polycystic ovary syndrome
Polycystic ovary syndrome is a disease that affects women at the reproductive age and is mainly caused by hormonal disruption. Although very common, this gynecological condition remains unknown to this day. Let us take stock of the causes, symptoms, complications and treatments of this disease.
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a fairly frequent disease. Known also under other medical names such as ovarian dystrophy, Stein-Leventhal syndrome or ovarian polycystic disease, PCOS usually affects women of child-bearing age.
Mainly caused by a hormonal disorder, specifically an overproduction of male hormones (androgens), polycystic ovary syndrome affects one in 10 women and leads to the formation of benign cysts in the ovaries.
It is important to remember that the ovaries are the main reproductive organs. The latter play a major role in the synthesis of female sex hormones (estrogen and progesterone) and in ovulation (egg production).
Polycystic ovary syndrome: the Symptoms, Cause
PCOS may be caused by several factors, the main one being a dysfunction of the pituitary gland and hypotalamus, which affects the production of a pituitary hormone.
Heredity, exposure to endocrine disruptors, and high levels of insulin that disrupt the balance of male and female hormones are also factors responsible for the development of this gynecological condition.
Polycystic ovary syndrome: signs that do not deceive
The symptoms of polycystic ovary syndrome vary greatly from one woman to another and may be of different intensities. They can appear from the first rules or on the contrary from years after. The most common symptoms are excessive hairiness and irregular menstrual cycle, but other signs may also appear as:
- The Acne
- Weight gain
- Fertility problems due to anovulation caused by PCOS
However that infertility can affect up to 75% of women suffering from this disease while obesity affects 50%.
Polycystic ovary syndrome can have serious health consequences. In addition to increasing the risks of heart disease and diabetes PCOS can also lead to hypertension, health disorders related to obesity that is due to this disease.
In fact, an Australian study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism confirmed this information. According to the researchers, women with polycystic ovary syndrome are more likely to suffer from cardiovascular and metabolic problems, which can ultimately lead to hospitalization. But not only ! These women are also more likely to be depressed, stressed or suffer from anxiety and infertility!
Finally, the Australian study also showed that women affected by PCOS are hospitalized twice as often as women who do not have PCOS.
Another complication of PCOS is also noted; Cancer of the endometrium. Irregular menstruation caused by hormone disruption causes thickening of the lining of the uterus in the long term which can promote the development of cancer cells.
Diagnosis and treatment:
While PCOS has distinct symptoms, its diagnosis remains difficult because it can easily be confused with other diseases. However, for a correct diagnosis, the physician must first ensure that the patient is not suffering from adrenal hyperplasia, hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, or tumor and that it has these three criteria: Anovulation, hyperandrogenism and polycystic ovaries that can be diagnosed via ultrasound.
In terms of treatment, it is important to know that PCOS is an incurable disease. The treatments that exist are intended to reduce the symptoms.
Thus, to combat obesity, doctors recommend that patients change their lifestyle (healthy diet and regular sports practice) in order to rebalance their hormones, as well as lose weight to prevent complications related to this problem.
To reduce hairiness and acne, birth control pills are prescribed, they will also be used to regulate the menstrual cycle.
Finally, for women suffering from PCOS and who want to get pregnant, specific treatments exist to accompany them.