Diagnosed with PCOS? What to do Next


As you might know, polycystic ovarian syndrome, or PCOS, is a common condition affecting women with reproductive organs. An imbalance in your hormone levels causes this condition, which can lead to everything from hair loss and missed periods, to infertility and pain. If you have been diagnosed with PCOS, the next thing to understand is what treatments are available and where you go from here.

What is PCOS?

PCOS, or polycystic ovarian syndrome, occurs when your reproductive hormones are out of balance. It can cause infertility, abnormal cycles, weight gain, hair loss, and painful cysts in your ovaries. When you have PCOS, ovulation is often interrupted because the eggs do not develop fully during each cycle. You may notice that you don’t have periods or periods that seem to come and go frequently pain from the cysts, or the inability to become pregnant.

Potential Complications

Wondering how PCOS can affect you? Here are some of the risks and complications of this condition.

  • Increased risk of type 2 diabetes
  • Sleep apnea and other sleep disturbances
  • Higher risk of obesity
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Gestational diabetes during pregnancy
  • Infertility – due to the lack of normal ovulation
  • Mood disorders, anxiety, and/or depression
  • Uterine bleeding outside of your period
  • Higher risk of endometrial cancer

It is possible to have PCOS and not even realize it if you aren’t trying to get pregnant or you don’t track your cycles. While many women experience a lot of pain from the cysts, many women live their lives with this condition and never realize it.

Treatment Options

There are a few ways you can get treatment if PCOS is negatively affecting your quality of life. The course of treatment also varies based on your main concerns. Many women treat their PCOS because of wanting to become pregnant. In this case, common treatments include:

Taking medication to induce ovulation. A common treatment to help women with PCOS become pregnant is to take medication to help cause ovulation. 

Make adjustments to your lifestyle. Changing your diet, making sure you get enough exercise and managing your weight are common when you have PCOS.

Getting infertility treatment. Aside from medication for ovulation, you might need further infertility treatment, such as IUI (intrauterine insemination) or IVF (in-vitro fertilization). 

For women not trying to become pregnant, treatment for the symptoms related to PCOS might include daily lifestyle changes, medications, or taking birth control pills.

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