Here at Pacific Fertility Center, we believe in proper diagnosis and treatment of both male and female infertility. By using state-of-the-art fertility treatment, we can help couples and individuals start families and realize their dreams. We have helped countless people throughout the greater Los Angeles area.
A number of women who come to our practice are often affected by a condition known as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). Let's consider the basics of PCOS and then look at what treatments may be best to address the condition.
What Is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)?
PCOS is a disorder of the endocrine system that affects women of reproductive age. The condition leads to hormonal imbalance, which can cause problems with your period, alter physical appearance, and make it much more difficult for you to become pregnant. Many women develop small cysts on their ovaries as a result of these hormonal imbalances, hence the name of the condition.
How Common Is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)?
PCOS is rather common. Some estimate that up to 10% of women who are of reproductive age are affected by PCOS.
What Causes Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)?
The exact cause of PCOS is still trying to be determined and understood. In general, many think that PCOS has a genetic component, and it may be more likely if other women in your family have been affected by PCOS. High insulin levels have also been linked to PCOS.
Signs and Symptoms of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)
Common signs and symptoms of PCOS include the following:
- Irregular menstrual cycle
- Excess facial and body hair
- Adult acne
- Weight gain
- Hair thinning
- Changes in mood
Be sure to discuss these issues with your physician should they arise so you can be tested for PCOS. From there, treatments can be discussed.
Treatments for Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)
Treating PCOS per se often involves lifestyle changes that promote wellness. This could include changes to your diet and a moderate exercise regimen. By improving health, weight, and wellness, the symptoms of PCOS may be improved. Drugs that improve insulin resistance and lower insulin levels may also be considered.
Fertility Treatments for Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)
In terms of improving fertility while affected by PCOS, many specialists prescribe birth control pills or fertility drugs that can help adjust hormone levels and regulate a woman's menstrual cycle. In vitro fertilization (IVF) may also be considered if the fertility medications alone prove ineffective.
Is Fertility Treatment Necessary?
Not necessarily, but this can vary. Sometimes a woman's fertility is improved simply from lifestyle changes that promote a healthier diet and more exercise. If this does not prove successful, the use of fertility drugs or IVF may be considered.
If you are affected by PCOS and have not been able to become pregnant despite lifestyle changes and lowered insulin levels, that's where our fertility specialists can help. We'd love to discuss these matters with you in a supportive and informative manner.
Contact the Team at Pacific Fertility Center
For more information about PCOS and how we can help you start the family you have always wanted, be sure to contact our team of fertility specialists today. The team at Pacific Fertility Center is here to help you make smart choices about your fertility options.