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Women's Health

WHAT IS PCOS?

PCOS stands for Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS). It is a common reproductive endocrine disorder that affects about 5- 10% of women of reproductive age.

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a condition that affects a woman’s hormone levels. Women with PCOS produce higher-than-normal amounts of male hormones. This hormone imbalance causes them to skip menstrual periods and makes it harder for them to get pregnant. It is also marked by acne, weight gain and excessive hair growth or hirsute.

PCOS

The name Polycystic Ovary is derived from the fact that the ovaries of women with the disease characteristically contain a large number of small cysts.

RISKS:

Lack of ovulation in women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) results in continuous exposure of their uterine lining (endometrium) to estrogen. This may cause excessive thickening of the endometrium and heavy, irregular bleeding.

RISKS

Over many years, endometrial cancer may result due to the continuous stimulation of the endometrium by estrogen unopposed by progesterone, which is only produced if ovulation occurs.

Women with PCOS are also at significantly higher risk for high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease.

Treatment:

Whether the goal may be regular periods, or to reduce acne and hair growth or to induce fertility, Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) should be treated because of the long-term health risks it poses. There are varied treatments for each of these and it is imperative that you consult your gynecologist for the same.

Managing PCOS:

Managing PCOS:

1. Stabilize your blood sugar.

Getting off the blood-sugar roller coaster is often the first and most important step in getting hormonal issues under control. It can have a serious affect on your symptoms.

2. Add just a little exercise to make a big difference.

Studies show that gentle movement (even just a five-minute walk) after eating helps mobilize the glucose from your meal into your cells more efficiently. Atleast a 150 minute workout per week is recommend for PCOS. It need not be strenuous exercise but simple walking will work wonders too.

3. Reduce Caffeine Intake

Caffeine has actually been shown to increase levels of estrogen in some women, and if you are prone to ovarian cysts or fibrocystic breasts, coffee is not a good idea.

4. Eat Right

  • Maintain a healthy weight. Weight loss can reduce insulin and androgen levels and may restore ovulation.
  • Limit carbohydrates. Low-fat, high-carbohydrate diets might increase insulin levels. Eat complex carbohydrates, which raise your blood sugar levels more slowly.

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