Polycystic Ovarian Disease (PCOD) or Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is a common condition in which there are multiple tiny cysts, which develop within the periphery of the ovary. This is associated with insulin insensitivity and excessive male hormone influence in women. PCOS may be seen in women from the age of 14 to 50 years and causes acne, excessive facial and body hair, weight gain and irregular periods.
In women of child-bearing age, it can result in infertility due to anovulation (the egg does not come out of the ovary each month). In older women, it can cause diabetes and cancer of the uterus, if care is not taken.
Causes Of Polycystic Ovarian Disease
The exact cause of PCOS is not known, though it is probably genetic in nature and is often seen in mothers and daughters or two sisters with the same problem. Lifestyle also affects PCOS and weight gain may aggravate the condition.
Prevention Of Polycystic Ovarian Disease
- As it is a genetic condition, one cannot prevent it, but can control it by a lifestyle change.
- Regular exercise and a healthy diet are extremely important.
- Early diagnosis and control are important, by doing a sonography and some hormone tests.
- Weight loss brings out a significant improvement in symptoms like irregular periods and inability to become pregnant.
- In young girls, where the main problems are cosmetic, low dose hormone pills given for three weeks every month bring about regular periods, reduce acne and facial hai
- In patients who are trying to achieve pregnancy, tablets and injections to bring about ovulation are very effective.
- Ensure regular menses every month by using hormone tablets. It prevents abnormal growth of the lining of the womb, which prevents the development of cancer of the uterus later.
- Anti-diabetic drugs, which improve insulin sensitivity, are known to improve the problems of PCOS and hence are prescribed to many patients. By laparoscopic ovarian drilling, keyhole surgery with a tiny needle, the cysts in the ovary are burnt.
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