One of the most common and treatable causes for infertility is polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). Whether PCOS is preventing you from getting pregnant or is causing other frustrating symptoms, Dr. Anthony Caruso and the team at A Bella Baby OBGYN understand that it can affect your emotional health, as well as your physical well-being. If PCOS is a problem for you, call or book an appointment online with his office in Woodridge, Illinois, today.
PCOS Q & A
What is polycystic ovary syndrome?
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a condition that affects around 1 in 10 women of childbearing age, resulting from imbalanced reproductive hormones. This imbalance causes the growth of small, fluid-filled sacs on the ovaries and interferes with healthy ovulation.
This condition mainly interferes with two main hormones:
These hormones are often referred to as “male-hormones,” though both men and women produce them. When they are overproduced, as with PCOS, they interfere with the female reproductive process.
This hormone is produced by the pancreas and is a key factor in healthy metabolism. When it is not produced in appropriate levels, as with PCOS, healthy production of reproductive hormones is hindered.
When the production of reproductive hormones is not balanced, infertility can occur, and you may be at higher risk for long-term problems such as diabetes.
What are the symptoms of PCOS?
Symptoms of PCOS may mimic other disorders. Experience and knowledge are important for accurate diagnosis and effective treatment. To properly diagnose PCOS, Dr. Caruso especially looks for evidence of ineffective ovulation and signs of the overproduction of androgens.
This evidence may include:
- Abnormal or irregular periods
- Inability to get pregnant
- Thinning hair or male-pattern baldness
- Excessive or unwanted hair
- Severe acne
- Darkening of the skin
- Weight gain or difficulty losing weight
To confirm a diagnosis of PCOS, Dr. Caruso performs a thorough physical exam, evaluates blood levels, and uses on-site ultrasound, if needed.
What treatment is available for PCOS?
Dr. Caruso advises a holistic approach to treating PCOS and increasing your potential for getting pregnant. Depending on your symptoms, your risk factors for complications — specifically, diabetes — and your blood levels, he may suggest:
- Healthy weight loss
- Nutritional support
- Healthy activity levels
- Natural hormone therapy
When these conservative approaches fail to resolve PCOS, Dr. Caruso may suggest a minimally invasive surgical approach called bilateral ovarian diathermy. This procedure helps to restore normal ovarian function, alleviating many symptoms, including infertility.
It is a priority for Dr. Caruso and the team at A Bella Baby OBGYN to get you and your body in the best shape it can be so that you can enjoy the benefits of healthy living and natural fertility.
If you would like to consult with Dr. Caruso about PCOS, call or book your appointment today.