Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) is a common and complex hormonal problem that can affect about 20% of Australian women.
PCOS is a hormonal and metabolic disorder affecting 15-20 % of Australian women. The symptoms include irregular periods, excess hair growth and or acne and often obesity.
The cause of polycystic ovary syndrome is not well understood, but probably involves a combination of genetic and environmental factors.
The symptoms vary greatly from patient to patient and the diagnosis can be difficult to make:
- Menstrual: abnormal menstruation, absence of menstruation, heavy menstruation, irregular menstruation, short and light menstruation, or spotting, generally cycles shorter than 21 days or longer than 35 days.
- Weight: obesity, overweight, or weight gain
- Skin: acne or oily skin, loss of scalp hair or excess body hair
- Patients will also often have difficulty falling pregnant
Treatments for PCOS
It is important for patients to have a clear diagnosis made and for them to understand their condition. This a lifelong condition which needs to be managed by the patient and her doctors to avoid a number of long term complications such as diabetes, blood pressure and heart disease.
Treatment will usually include birth control pills or hormones to regularise periods. A medication called metformin may be useful in patients who have insulin resistance or type 2 diabetes as part of the condition.
Patients wishing to conceive will fall easily with the use of Clomiphene or Letrozole tablets to induce ovulation. 10-20 % of patients will need more involved fertility treatment or IVF.
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Phone: (02) 4957 3899