Know about PCOS



According to PCOS Society of India approximately 20% of women are affected by Polycystic Ovary Syndrome or PCOS. Not many know about this condition due to lack of resources to learn about the syndrome. It is a significant health concern that requires attention on a large scale.

The symptoms mainly include irregular periods or no periods at all; difficulty getting pregnant; excessive hair growth; weight gain; thinning hair and oily skin or acne.

Another issue affecting awareness is the many stigmas associated with PCOS. Lots of women and girls are afraid to open up about their experiences and feelings. Until these stigmas are removed, we cannot expect others to understand.
This is why knowing they are not alone, knowing others are out there dealing with what you are dealing with and being open to sharing stories, in turn, will increase awareness and sensitivity.

How is PCOS diagnosed ?

To get a diagnosis of PCOS you need two of the following three;

1)  Periods that are more or less frequent than monthly.

2)  Symptoms such as acne (may be severe) and increased hair growth (face, stomach, back) or a blood test showing higher levels of androgen hormones.

3)  Ultrasound (image) of your ovaries (showing more than 20 follicles). You do not need to have an ultrasound if you have 1) and 2). For younger women within 8 years of periods starting 1 and 2 are needed for diagnosis. For adult women if 1 and 2 are present, the diagnosis is made once other causes are excluded. In adults if only 1 or 2 are present then an ultrasound can be performed. Ultrasounds are not recommended in young women. The doctor will also exclude other diseases before making a PCOS diagnosis.

Fortunately a great deal of research has been focused on this hormonal condition but awareness has to be created which would take a lot of effort and attention.

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