PCOS — A Common Form of Infertility
Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is found in 10% of U.S. women and tends to emerge in late adolescence or early adulthood. Symptoms include:
- Irregular or missing menstrual periods
- Excess hair on back, chest, or face
- Acne or hair loss on head
- Pelvic pain
- Difficulty becoming pregnant
During the ovulation phase of a woman’s cycle, a number of eggs develop on the surface of the ovaries but one egg becomes “dominant” and is released to the fallopian tubes. The other eggs shrivel and sink back into the ovarian tissue. In PCOS, bead-like cysts form on the surface of the ovary with the remains of dominant eggs that did not release.
Experts cannot yet pinpoint the cause of PCOS but know that hormone levels play a key role. It is also known that insulin resistance can upset the hormonal balance of androgens, leading to ovulation problems. A woman is more likely to develop PCOS if her close female relatives have suffered from it. Treatment options include weight loss which will help to lower insulin levels; contraceptive pills to regulate the cycle; and other drugs to correct hormonal imbalances. In some cases, laparoscopic laser or heat surgery can solve the problem if medications have been ineffective.
Dr. Amy M. Siegel diagnoses and treats women’s health issues using state-of-the-art diagnostic tools coupled with her years of experience. There IS a difference in women’s healthcare.