What You Don’t Know about PCOS | Dr. Himabindu Explains

Dr Himabindu

Medically Reviewed by Dr. Himabindu,
July 31, 2023

Polycystic ovary syndrome

Polycystic ovary syndrome PCOS affects 15-25% of reproductive-aged women and it is one of the most common endocrine disorders in women.

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a common hormonal disorder that affects many women worldwide. Despite its prevalence, there is still a lot that remains unknown about this condition. Here, we will delve into some lesser-known aspects of PCOS, shedding light on what you might not be aware of.

Misunderstood Causes of PCOS in Females

While the exact cause of PCOS is yet to be fully understood, researchers believe that genetics and hormonal imbalances play significant roles. Insulin resistance, where cells fail to respond effectively to insulin, also seems to be associated with the condition. However, there might be other environmental and lifestyle factors that contribute to its development, making it a complex condition that requires further investigation.

Wide Spectrum of Symptoms

Polycystic ovary syndrome PCOS manifests in a variety of symptoms, making it challenging to diagnose. Irregular menstrual cycles, excess androgen production, and ovarian cysts are some of the hallmark symptoms. However, not all women with PCOS experience the same signs, and some may have a milder presentation, leading to underdiagnosis or misdiagnosis.

Learn more about the Symptoms of PCOS

Impact on Mental Health

Beyond the physical symptoms, PCOS can significantly affect a woman’s mental health. The distress of coping with irregular periods, fertility challenges, weight fluctuations, and excessive hair growth can lead to anxiety, depression, and reduced self-esteem. It’s crucial to address the emotional impact and provide appropriate support and counseling to women with PCOS.

Long-term Health Consequences

PCOS is not just a reproductive issue; it can have long-term health consequences. Women with PCOS are at higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and endometrial cancer. Early detection, lifestyle modifications, and regular medical check-ups are essential to manage these potential risks effectively.

Impact on Fertility

One of the most well-known aspects of PCOS is its association with fertility problems. However, not all women with PCOS struggle with infertility. While some may experience difficulty conceiving, others may still be able to conceive naturally. With proper medical guidance and treatment, many women with PCOS can fulfill their desire to become mothers.

Tailored Treatment Approaches

There is no one-size-fits-all treatment for PCOS. The management of PCOS involves a personalized approach that takes into account the individual’s symptoms, medical history, and goals. Lifestyle modifications, such as adopting a balanced diet, regular exercise, and stress management, are often the first-line treatment. Medications and hormonal therapies may also be prescribed to address specific symptoms.

Importance of Early Diagnosis

Early diagnosis of PCOS is crucial for better management of the condition and to prevent potential complications. Regular health check-ups and open communication with healthcare providers are essential for identifying PCOS in its early stages.

Potential Influence of Diet

While there is no specific PCOS diet, some evidence suggests that certain dietary patterns might help manage symptoms. For instance, a low-glycemic index diet may be beneficial for women with PCOS and insulin resistance. Working with a registered dietitian can help tailor dietary recommendations to an individual’s needs.

Ongoing Research and Support

PCOS remains an active area of research, and ongoing studies aim to uncover more about its causes, effective treatments, and potential cures. Additionally, numerous support groups and online communities provide a platform for women with PCOS to share experiences, information, and emotional support.

What You Don’t Know about PCOS

A majority of women don’t know many things about PCOS. If you are one among those, then read the following:

  • PCOS may show up as weight gain, acne, skin tags, unusual hair growth, hot flashes, brain fog, and PMS
  • PCOS is often poorly diagnosed.
  • The condition is properly diagnosed in fewer than 50% of women.
  • Millions of women have symptoms, but they remain unaware of their symptoms.
  • Anxiety and depression are common in women with PCOS.
  • Women with Polycystic ovary syndrome PCOS have unhealthy cholesterol and high blood pressure.
  • The risk of heart attack and endometrial cancer increases with PCOS.
  • To be diagnosed with PCOS, one doesn’t have to present with ovarian cysts.
  • 10% of women with PCOS has diabetes and around 70% women have insulin resistance.
  • 50% of women with PCOS are more likely to develop prediabetes and diabetes before age 40.
  • Middle-aged women with PCOS have a higher risk of getting diabetes compared with others.
  • In obese women with PCOS, losing just 5 – 10% body weight can improve metabolic, psychological and physiological symptoms.
  • High androgen levels are the prominent indications of PCOS in women.
  • PCOS can be successfully managed and fertility can be achieved.

Bottom Line

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome PCOS is a multifaceted condition with various implications for women’s health and well-being. Despite its prevalence, there are still many aspects of PCOS that remain unknown or misunderstood. By raising awareness and investing in research, we can better understand PCOS and improve the lives of millions of women living with this condition. If you suspect you have PCOS or are experiencing any related symptoms, it is crucial to consult an expert gynecologist for a comprehensive evaluation and personalized treatment and management plan.


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