Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) Treatment Specialist in Arcadia, and Glendale CA
Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder that causes many symptoms such as irregular periods, abnormal hair growth, infertility, acne, loss of hair, and obesity. If you notice any of these symptoms please visit The OB-Gyn & Incontinence Center and meet Dr. Prema Kothandaraman, MD. Our clinics are located in Arcadia, CA, and Glendale, CA. For more information, contact us today or book an appointment online.
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Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is a life-long health condition that affects anywhere from 6% to 12% of females in the USA but often goes undiagnosed or misdiagnosed due to the range of symptoms and more likely causes of those symptoms. The condition has previously predominantly been treated as something that only really affects females of reproductive age, but the symptoms and associated risks continue to persist throughout the patient’s entire life, requiring long-term treatment and symptom management.
There are quite a few symptoms that can be indicative of PCOS, and many patients will not have all of the symptoms at once but only just a few with more developing eventually, making this a difficult condition to diagnose. The most common symptoms of PCOS include:
● Irregular or missed periods
● Increased hair growth, specifically on the face, back, chest, and buttocks
● Thinning hair from the head
● Weight gain
● Acne or oily skin
● Struggling to get pregnant (often due to irregular ovulation)
Several of these symptoms are common among those with health conditions or are often just considered just a part of menstruation or increased stress, often leading to women going years before they are able to receive an accurate diagnosis. The most common symptom of PCOS that is often overlooked or seen as the symptom of a different condition is difficulty maintaining a stable weight, with over 50% of women who have PCOS struggling with unexplained weight gain.
PCOS in and of itself is not a life-threatening or severely dangerous health condition, but those who suffer from PCOS are at increased risk of developing other more severe health conditions down the road, making treatment highly recommended to both help manage present symptoms and to prevent the development of other health conditions. Some if the health conditions that are more likely to develop in patients with PCOS include:
● Infertility, miscarriage, or premature birth
● Gestational diabetes
● Increased blood pressure during pregnancy
● Type 2 diabetes
● Increased build-up of fat in the liver, leading to inflammation or eventually nonalcoholic steatohepatitis
● Sleep apnea
● Endometrial cancer (cancer of the uterine lining)
● Anxiety, depression, and eating disorders
● Obesity (obesity can also further increase the risk of developing other possible health conditions)
● Cardiovascular disorders
So, while having PCOS is not considered a life-threatening or severe condition, the symptoms alone, and the additional risks associated make it incredibly important for patients to receive accurate diagnoses and treatment.
As those who suffer from PCOS continue to age, the symptoms will likely not worsen but the focus of how the condition is affecting their health and daily life will shift from concerns regarding reproductive health to metabolic health. It may also become increasingly difficult to manage the symptoms of PCOS as the patient ages, with it becoming harder to maintain a healthy weight or healthy lifestyle. Those suffering from PCOS are more likely to become obese once they have aged out of their reproductive years, and the presence of obesity significantly increases the risk of developing metabolic conditions including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, as well as increased blood pressure and cholesterol levels. The symptoms of hirsutism (thinning of the hair on the head, increased growth of body and facial hair) also tend to worsen with age.
There are no known direct causes of PCOS, but there are some factors that may increase an individual’s risk of developing the condition as they age into their reproductive years. One of the initial risk factors for developing PCOS is if you have a family history of the condition, as it has proven to be hereditary. Other notable risk factors for PCOS include of your ovaries produce higher than typical levels of the hormone androgen, resulting in multiple symptoms commonly associated with PCOS including hirsutism, acne, and irregularities with ovulation. If your body has an increased resistance to insulin, the risk of having PCOS also increases as too much insulin in the body can lead to increased production of androgen. Our clinics are located in Arcadia, CA, and Glendale, CA. For more information, contact us today or book an appointment online. We serve patients from Arcadia CA, Glendale CA, Monrovia CA, Pasadena CA, Los Angeles CA, Burbank CA and surrounding areas.