Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome is a hormonal disorder that affects millions of women around the world. Over a hundred thousand cases of Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome occur each year in Nigeria. A large percentage of this number will however remain undiagnosed. This is one of the reasons why the entire month of September is designated to increase awareness about Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome popularly called PCOS.
PCOS affects a woman’s hormonal levels. It causes the ovaries to produce higher than normal amounts of the male hormone androgen. This affects ovulation and may make it difficult for the woman to get pregnant. Symptoms of PCOS include:
- Irregular periods
- Increased hair growth including facial hair.
- Weight gain etc.
Early diagnosis of PCOS may reduce the risk of long-term complications. The exact cause of PCOS is unknown but medical experts have linked genetics and insulin resistance amongst others to excess production of the male hormone androgen.
There is currently no cure for PCOS, doctors focus on treating the symptoms of each individual patient. PCOS may lead to weight gain or obesity. Weight loss and physical exercise and maintaining a healthy diet are very important aspects of treating PCOS. Medications such as birth control pills and anti-diabetic medication are also used to treat Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome.
A study states that 70%-80% with PCOS have fertility issues. While Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome is a common cause of infertility, it does not always mean women with it cannot have children. There are different options available to women with PCOS. Your gynaecologist can always educate you on fertility and treatment options regarding PCOS. Regular visits to your gynaecologists may increase chances of early detection. There is no special treatment centre for PCOS, a good fertility clinic in Abuja handle PCOS cases effectively.
Make regular visits to your gynaecologist a norm.