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Understanding PCOS: 5 Symptoms To Look Out For

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is a condition that can affects women from the age of 13 to 45 years. It may be a result of various factors, ranging from genetics to lifestyle habits. As it has become more and more commonly noticed in women today, it is important to be aware of the signs and symptoms of PCOS so that you can get it checked and treated on time.

Although there is no particular way to diagnose PCOS, it is important to see a specialist in women’s health for the same. Here are some of the symptoms of PCOS, according to the specialists at Manipal Hospital Whitefield:

1. Irregular Periods

One of the most common symptoms of PCOS is irregular or infrequent menstrual cycles. Another symptom here is a prolonged menstrual cycle. These can occur due to reasons apart from PCOS like stress, illnesses or medication. But if you experience these irregularities in your cycle for a long period, you should see your doctor.

2. Hirsutism

Hirsutism is another name for an abnormal amount of hair growth on the face and body. This can occur in a woman with PCOS, because PCOS causes a change in hormone levels, with a rise in male hormones in your body, resulting in the excessive growth of facial and body hair. At the same time, this can also cause male pattern baldness.

3. Obesity

If you are obese, overweight, or unable to manage your weight, you may be at a risk for developing PCOS. The reverse is also possible. PCOS itself can influence the metabolism and make it difficult to lose weight, causing obesity. This can also increase your risk of illnesses like diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure when it is coupled with an unhealthy lifestyle.

4. Infertility or Miscarriage

Again, infertility and miscarriages can be a result of various factors. But one of the reasons behind this could be PCOS. It is therefore important to talk to your doctor so that you can treat it on time.

5. Acne

PCOS can also lead to acne, which worsens with time. This can occur due to the elevated levels of male hormone in your body. Acne is also caused by factors like your skin care regime, skin type and food habits, so acne alone does not point to a diagnosis of PCOS.

There are no exact signs and symptoms of PCOS, but when you experience 2 or more of these symptoms, you should consider seeing a specialist.

Diagnosis

There is no test for PCOS, but your doctor will take into consideration many factors like your medical history, lifestyle, menstrual cycle and weight changes. The above symptoms will be taken into consideration. Your doctor may also recommend a blood test and ultrasound for more conclusive results.

Treatment

The treatment for PCOS differs from person to person. An overall lifestyle change coupled with medication is usually the course of treatment. The team at Manipal Hospital Whitefield recommends looking out for the symptoms because an early diagnosis can make treatment and the management of symptoms simpler.

Although there is no hard and fast rule that helps your doctor determine whether you have PCOS, seeing a specialist ensures a more reliable diagnosis, and makes treatment and management simpler.

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