Top Ten Things I Wish Everyone Knew about PCOS

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A typical polcystic ovary on the right, with a whole bunch of growing follicles! (Follicles are the fluid-filled sacs inside of which eggs develop). (Photo Credit: Bayer Research Magazine)

Gosh, it’s been a minute since I blogged. I’ve been a bit busy collaborating with other folks (talking about egg donation, fertility in your 20s & 30s, and quality of life with PCOS), but TODAY is PCOS Advocacy Day, so I had to come back to my own blog to try put this together to delve into PCOS, or polycystic ovary syndrome. So, without further ado, the “Top Ten Things I Wish Everyone Knew about PCOS”:

  1. The diagnosis: There are multiple different criteria to diagnose PCOS. The most broad is the Rotterdam criteria, in which you have at least 2 out of 3 things (irregular or absent ovulation, symptoms or labwork to show high androgen levels, and polycystic-appearing ovaries). The older NIH criteria requires the first two, and is a stricter phenotype (more the “typical” PCOS patient, and fewer women meet those criteria). Nowadays, we usually use Rotterdam criteria for clinical management because at least some components of the syndrome apply to all women, but it is really helpful to know what criteria were used to give you the diagnosis! Sometimes people get this diagnosis because they had an ovarian cyst, or an elevated LH/FSH ratio, but these are not part of the criteria!

“If you can take good care of your health, and either avoid or keep diagnoses like diabetes, hypertension or heart disease well-controlled, by the time you hit the post-menopausal years, your PCOS will be irrelevant! How great will it feel to finally kick that diagnosis to the curb?!?” — Rashmi Kudesia, MD

So. I hope that is a helpful top 10 list! Anything you would add? And again, happy PCOS Advocacy Day!

Written by

Fertility doc & women’s health crusader. Wife-mother-daughter-sister working on health, happiness and following my passions.

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