PCOS usually affects women during their reproductive years
Our Round Rock obgyns can diagnose and treat PCOS, or polycystic ovary syndrome. This disorder affects one in 10 women of childbearing age,* but it can strike girls before puberty. Women with this condition require a physician who has experience in diagnosing PCOS because it can be difficult to pinpoint.
What is PCOS?
PCOS is a hormonal disorder that occurs when a woman’s adrenal glands produce too many androgens, or “male” hormones. The exact cause of the condition is unknown, but physicians do know that high levels of androgens can cause problems with ovulation and other symptoms.
What are the signs and symptoms of PCOS?
PCOS causes a variety of symptoms, but every woman experiences the syndrome differently. Symptoms of PCOS may include:
- Infrequent, irregular or absent periods
- Moderate to severe acne
- Hair growth on the stomach, back, chest, face, fingers or toes (hirsutism)
- Hair loss
- Weight gain or obesity
- Thick patches of skin that are black or dark brown
- Pelvic pain
How does this condition affect a woman’s health?
Women with PCOS have an increased risk of developing other conditions, including diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, depression, anxiety and sleep apnea. The good news is that the symptoms can be managed with treatment and lifestyle changes.
How is PCOS diagnosed and treated?
When it comes to diagnosing PCOS, patients can rely on our Round Rock obgyns’ experience. There isn’t one test that detects this condition. Our physicians begin by taking a complete medical history and discussing the patient’s symptoms in detail. Next, they perform a physical and pelvic exam. Finally, our physicians order blood tests and an ultrasound exam for some patients. The ultrasound helps them determine whether the woman has ovarian symptoms or a thickening of the uterine lining.
PCOS treatment plans are customized to meet each woman’s needs. Here are some options:
- Medications. Birth control pills that contain progesterone and estrogen can help treat symptoms, including menstrual problems, acne and hirsutism. Metformin, a medication commonly used to treat diabetes, can help address ovulation problems and insulin-resistance.
- Lifestyle changes, including losing weight, eating a healthy diet and getting regular amounts of moderate exercise are also helpful steps.
Our Round Rock obgyns offer compassionate care for patients with PCOS. Contact us to ensure the proper diagnosis and treatment.