September 9

September is PCOS Awareness Month!

PCOSDo you know what PCOS is? PCOS stands for Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. According to the U.S. Office on Women’s Health, PCOS is the most common cause of female infertility. Some of the symptoms of PCOS include:

  • Infertility (not able to get pregnant) because of not ovulating.
  • Infrequent, absent, and/or irregular menstrual periods
  • Hirsutism – increased hair growth on the face, chest, stomach, back, thumbs, or toes
  • Cysts on the ovaries
  • Acne, oily skin, or dandruff
  • Weight gain or obesity, usually with extra weight around the waist
  • Male-pattern baldness or thinning hair
  • Patches of skin on the neck, arms, breasts, or thighs that are thick and dark brown or black
  • Skin tags — excess flaps of skin in the armpits or neck area
  • Pelvic pain
  • Anxiety or depression
  • Sleep apnea — when breathing stops for short periods of time while asleep

The problem with PCOS is that no one knows what exactly causes it. Researchers believe insulin is linked to PCOS. Women with PCOS frequently have too much insulin in their bodies. The insulin increases androgen production, and the high androgen levels can result in the inability to ovulate regularly. Many women with PCOS have trouble getting pregnant. Some turn to assisted reproductive technologies, such as IVF, using an egg donor, or using a surrogat