Understanding PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome)

Women’s bodies can be complicated. It can be difficult for some women to realize that something is wrong with their reproductive system. One condition that is seen by the providers at Northwest Women’s Center in Houston, TX that may require additional attention is that of PCOS.

What is PCOS?

PCOS stands for polycystic ovary syndrome. This hormonal disorder is actually more common than patients realize in women of reproductive age. There may be several different signs and symptoms that PCOS is present, and some of them include the following:

• Irregular period – one of the easiest ways to spot PCOS may be with irregular periods. Some women have infrequent, irregular, or even prolonged menstrual cycles. For example, some women experience less than nine menstrual cycles in a year. Others have very heavy periods when they do get them.

• Excess androgen – another sign of PCOS is extra androgen in the body, which is a male hormone. These elevated levels of androgen can cause severe acne, baldness, and extra facial and body hair.

• Polycystic ovaries – during an evaluation with a doctor, patients may be told they have polycystic ovaries. These ovaries are often large and have follicles that surround the eggs. This can cause the ovaries to not function properly.

Women who are overweight or obese may experience more severe symptoms of PCOS.

When should I see a doctor for my condition?

If you are experiencing unusual menstrual periods and symptoms, or are experiencing infertility, it may be time to work with a doctor to address the condition. Diagnosis may include blood tests, a pelvic examination, and an ultrasound to evaluate the ovaries and check the thickness of the uterine lining. If a diagnosis is made, treatment will be recommended. It may include a combination of lifestyle changes and medication.

Are you interested in treatment of PCOS?

If you have been diagnosed with PCOS and are interested in speaking to a provider regarding appropriate treatment options, we welcome you to book an appointment at the Northwest Women’s Center in Houston, TX. Our practice is located at 13215 Dotson Road, Ste. 200. Our front office team accepts appointment requests at (281) 444-3440.

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