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Hormones cause Weight Gain

PCOS Symptoms

Understanding PCOS symptoms

Women with PCOS may have some of the following symptoms:

Period Problems with PCOS

Amenorrhea (no menstrual period)

Infrequent menses, and/or oligomenorrhea (irregular bleeding) - may include lengthy bleeding episodes, scant or heavy periods, or frequent spotting.

Lengthy Cycles - Cycles are often greater than six weeks in length, with eight or fewer periods in a year.

Ovulation Problems with PCOS

Oligo or anovulation (infrequent or absent ovulation) - While women with PCOS produce follicles - which are fluid-filled sacs on the ovary that contain an egg - the follicles often do not mature and release as needed for ovulation. These immature follicles are the basis of cyst formation.

Infertility with PCOS

Infertility - Infertility is the inability to get pregnant within six to 12 months of unprotected intercourse, depending on age. With PCOS, infertility is usually due to ovulatory dysfunction.

Hyperandrogenism - Increased serum levels of male hormones cause unexplained infertility with PCOS. Hormones such as testosterone, androstenedione, and dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate(DHEAS) contribute to this.

Ovarian enlargement with PCOS

Cystic ovaries - Classic PCOS ovaries have a "string of pearls" or "pearl necklace" appearance with many cysts (fluid-filled sacs). It is difficult to diagnose PCOS without the presence of some cysts or ovarian enlargement, but sometimes more subtle alterations may not have been recorded, or are not recognized as abnormal, by the ultrasonographer.

Enlarged ovaries - Polycystic ovaries are usually 1.5 to 3 times larger than normal.

Pain With PCOS

Chronic pelvic pain - The exact cause of this pain isn't known, but it may be due to enlarged ovaries leading to pelvic crowding. It is considered chronic when it has been noted for greater than six months.

Weight Gain With PCOS

Obesity or weight gain - Commonly a woman with PCOS will have what is called an apple figure where excess weight is concentrated heavily in the abdomen, similar to the way men often gain weight, with comparatively narrower arms and legs. The hip:waist ratio is smaller than on a pear-shaped woman - meaning there is less difference between hip and waist measurements. It should be noted that most, but not all, women with PCOS are overweight.

Insulin Resistance With PCOS

Insulin resistance, hyperinsulinemia, and diabetes - Insulin resistance is a condition where the body's use of insulin is inefficient. It is usually accompanied by compensatory hyperinsulinemia - an over-production of insulin. Both conditions often occur with normal glucose levels, and may be a precursor to diabetes, in which glucose intolerance is further decreased and blood glucose levels may also be elevated.

High Cholesterol With PCOS

Dyslipidemia (lipid abnormalities) - Some women with PCOS have elevated LDL and reduced HDL cholesterol levels, as well as high triglycerides.

High Blood Pressure With PCOS

Hypertension (high blood pressure) - Blood pressure readings over 140/90.

Excess Body Hair and Hair Loss With PCOS

Hirsutism (excess hair) - Excess hair growth such as on the face, chest, abdomen, thumbs, or toes.

Alopecia (male-pattern baldness or thinning hair) - The balding is more common on the top of the head than at the temples.

Skin Problems With PCOS

Acne/Oily Skin/Seborrhea - Oil production is stimulated by overproduction of androgens. Seborrhea is dandruff - flaking skin on the scalp caused by excess oil.

Acanthosis nigricans (dark patches of skin, tan to dark brown/black) - Most commonly on the back of the neck, but also but also in skin creases under arms, breasts, and between thighs, occasionally on the hands, elbows and knees. The darkened skin is usually velvety or rough to the touch.

Acrochordons (skin tags) - Tiny flaps (tags) of skin that usually cause no symptoms unless irritated by rubbing.

Sleep apnoea with PCOS

Women with PCOS, particularly when they are overweight or insulin resistant, can be at an increased risk of developing sleep-disordered breathing or sleep apnoea. Sleep apnoea occurs when the upper airway is obstructed during sleep - this can be due to pressure from excessive fatty tissue in the neck partially blocking the airway. This can lead to sleep loss, fatigue, tiredness and reduced quality of daily life.

Natural solutions for PCOS

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