Polycystic ovary syndrome is a complex disorder which can impact many body functions. If not well managed, PCOS can lead to serious long-term complications such as weight gain or obesity, endometrial cancer, cardiovascular disease.
PCOD or PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Disease or syndrome) occurs when level
of sex hormones, estrogen and progesterone of women go out of control.
These imbalance of hormone level will induces growth of small ovarian
cysts which which results into pregnancy related issues. In polycystic
ovarian disease (PCOD), the patient will have multiple small cysts in
her ovaries . These cysts occur when the regular changes of a normal
menstrual cycle are disrupted. The ovary is enlarged and produces
excessive amounts of androgen and estrogenic hormones. This excessive
secretion of hormones along with the absence of ovulation, may cause
Polycystic ovary syndrome is a complex disorder
which can impact many body functions. If not well managed, PCOS can lead
to serious long-term complications such as weight gain or obesity,
endometrial cancer, cardiovascular disease, insulin resistance, diabetes
and metabolic syndrome. Many of the treatments that are used for your
PCOS will also help to prevent many of the complications. The
Weight gain & obesity:
the women with PCOS are overweight or obese. This excess weight is more
likely to be concentrated around the abdominal (stomach) region. Having
a high amount of abdominal obesity, is associated with:
Problems with infertility:
higher risk of insulin resistance in which the body does not use the
available insulin effectively to help keep the glucose levels stable.
A higher risk of type 2 diabetes:
A higher risk of cardiovascular disease, including high blood pressure and heart disease.
Syndrome is a group of risk factors which commonly occur together and
increase ones risk for type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. The
most common metabolic changes associated with this syndrome includes:
Increased abdominal weight
- High blood pressure
- High fasting blood sugar
- High levels of triglycerides.
- Low levels of good cholesterol, or HDL
metabolic syndrome is linked to obesity and insulin resistance, women
with PCOS are at an increased risk for these above conditions.
Prediabetes & type 2 diabetes:
with PCOS have increased risk of developing prediabetes and type 2
diabetes than women without PCOS. Prediabetes is the stage before type 2
diabetes. This risk is further increased by:
- being overweight or obese
- having insulin resistance
- having a family history of type 2 diabetes
with PCOS have a higher risk of developing diabetes in pregnancy which
is known as gestational diabetes. This risk increases if you are
overweight when you are pregnant.
with PCOS are at twice as much risk of heart related complications or
stroke. There are a number of factors that increase the risk of
cardiovascular disease such as:
- high blood pressure
- high blood fats or cholesterol
- high levels of inflammatory proteins which can alter the function of blood vessels and increase insulin resistance
- high levels of 'bad' cholesterol or low density lipoprotein cholesterol which increases the risk of developing heart disease
These conditions can increase your risk for a heart attack and stroke.
with PCOS do have a slightly higher chance for developing endometrial
cancer than women who do not have PCOD. The main cause of endometrial
cancer is having very infrequent periods. The more irregular and fewer
periods a woman has, the greater her risk becomes developing PCOS.
During a normal menstrual cycle, the endometrium is exposed to hormones,
such as estrogen, which cause the lining to proliferate and thicken.
When ovulation does not occur, which is typical in PCOS, the lining is
not shed and is exposed to much higher amounts of estrogen causing the
endometrium to grow much thicker than normal. This is what increases the
chance of abnormal cells which can develop into cancerous cells as a
Restoring hormone balance by improving the regularity
of menstrual cycle is an important part of managing PCOS which can be
done by following a healthy diet, doing regular exercise, and loosing
weight. Oral contraceptives, metformin and inositol can also help to
improve menstrual regularity in some women with PCOS.