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What is the full form of PCOS?

PCOS: Polycystic ovary syndrome

The full form of PCOS is Polycystic ovary syndrome. Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a common hormonal disorder among women of reproductive age. This problem affects 1 in 10 women of childbearing age. PCOS is due to a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Risk factors include obesity, lack of exercise and a family history of someone with the disease. Women with PCOS produce higher than normal amounts of male hormones. This hormonal imbalance causes them to skip menstrual periods and make pregnancy difficult. PCOS also causes hair growth on the face, body, and baldness. And it can contribute to long-term health problems such as diabetes and heart disease. Most women discover they have PCOS in their 20s and 30s when they have trouble getting pregnant and seeing a doctor. But PCOS can occur at any age after puberty.

Symptoms

  • Irregular periods, women with PCOS may miss periods or have fewer periods (less than eight in a year). Or, their periods may occur every 21 days or more frequently. Some women with PCOS stop having menstrual periods.
  • Heavy bleeding, The uterine lining accumulates over a long period of time, so the periods may be heavier than normal.
  • Too much hair on the face, chin or body parts where men usually have hair. This is called “hirsutism.” Hirsutism affects up to 70% of women with PCOS.
  • Oily skin or acne on the face, chest and upper back.
  • Skin tags or Marks on the skin, which are small excess skin flaps in the armpits or neck area.
  • Hair loss in the scalp; male pattern baldness.
  • Weight gain or difficulty losing weight
  • Darkening of the skin, especially along the folds of the neck, in the groin and underneath breasts.
  • Difficulty getting pregnant due to irregular ovulation or lack of ovulation
  • Headaches, hormonal changes can trigger headaches in some women.

The main treatments for PCOS include lifestyle changes and medications. When PCOS is associated with overweight or obesity, successful weight loss is the most effective method to restore normal ovulation/menstruation. Medications for PCOS include oral contraceptives and metformin. Oral contraceptives increase the production of sex hormone-binding globulin, which increases free testosterone fixation. This reduces the symptoms of hirsutism caused by high testosterone and regulates the return to normal menstrual periods.

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