PCOS stands for Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. It is a condition where the female ovaries produce abnormal levels of male hormones called androgens. This condition affects a woman’s menstrual cycle, fertility rate and physical appearance. Some of the symptoms of PCOS are irregular menstrual cycles, infertility, significant weight gain or obesity, cysts in one’s ovaries, increase in facial and body hair, thinning of head hair, and occurrence of acne on one’s face, chest and upper back.
Women who suffer from PCOS usually have problems conceiving as they have a higher level of androgens than normal. It creates disruptions in their body during the ovulation process, which is when the ovaries produce an egg. Since this is an integral part of the impregnation process, it is evident that PCOS can cause complications in pregnancy and increase one’s risk of infertility. Some of the pregnancy-related complications of PCOS include miscarriage, premature birth, high blood pressure during pregnancy, and an increase in the chances of gestational diabetes.
The baby’s size is larger in case of a pregnant woman with PCOS. This is because the baby most likely has a higher gestational age. Due to the larger size of the baby, the expecting mother may have to opt for a caesarean delivery instead of a normal delivery. If you suffer from PCOS, it is wiser to consider a hospital with a Level III NICU as chances of complications around the time of delivery are higher and may require immediate and intense care.
PCOS is a common condition many women face, however it should not be assumed as an obstacle for infertility. Rather than attributing your inability to conceive to PCOS, it is crucial that you consult an expert gynecologist and let him run some tests so that he can correctly diagnose and treat your condition.
The most effective and healthy way of treating PCOS is to change one’s lifestyle by being healthier and dedicating more time to fitness. One of the symptoms of PCOS is weight gain. By modifying your eating habits, you can set off on your journey of weight loss, which will not only resolve your PCOS but also reduce your risk of falling prey to heart disease and cholesterol problems. Even a loss in 10 to 20 per cent of weight will show immediate results such as regularity in menstruation, clearing of skin and reduction in hair fall.
So, if you’re looking at starting a family soon, and have a history of PCOS, you should consult a doctor at the earliest to ensure that you are able to conceive and have a healthy pregnancy.