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Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) affects 1 in 10 women in America. Though the exact cause of PCOS is unknown, it occurs when the intricate process of a women's reproductive cycle is disrupted by abnormal hormonal fluctuations. Ovulation is either interrupted entirely or occurs less frequently. For specialized diagnosis and treatment of PCOS in Portland, visit Pearl Women's Center.

To find out more about PCOS, choose the specialists at Pearl Women's Center. Ask a question, book online, or call our office in Portland at (503) 771-1883. We serve patients from Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Northern California and Alaska.

Signs and Symptoms

Women with PCOS produce excess insulin which in turn contributes to excess androgen production (the male sex hormone) and an abnormally high ratio of other hormones produced by the ovaries. Symptoms of PCOS include:

  • Irregular or no menstrual periods
  • Infertility
  • Unwanted or excessive hair growth
  • Elevated insulin levels
  • Obesity, weight gain or difficulty losing weight
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Enlarged ovaries with multiple cysts
  • Elevated levels of male sex hormones called androgen

Diagnosis and Treatment

Pearl Women's Center practitioners are experts in the diagnosis and treatment of Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome in Portland. Diagnosis will be based on a thorough medical history, physical exam and laboratory tests, sometimes supplemented by an ultrasound exam onsite at our center.

As always, treatment strategies at Pearl Women's Center are carefully tailored to the individual circumstances of each patient, but may include:

  • Hormones or birth control pills to bring on regular menstrual bleeding
  • Medication to slow body hair growth
  • Medications to stimulate ovulation for women wishing to become pregnant
  • Lifestyle changes like diet and exercise to improve the body's use of insulin and help relieve symptoms
  • Surgery

Complications

Women with PCOS are at increased risk for developing serious medical problems. Early diagnosis and treatment may help reduce the risk of:

  • Heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Endometrial cancer

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