PCOS Management

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) affects approximately 5% to 10% of women of reproductive age and is one of the most common causes of an ovulatory infertility.

PCOS manifests in multiple cysts covering the ovaries, filled with immature follicles (eggs) accompanied by hormonal abnormalities and irregularities in ovulation and menstruation.

Diagnosis

For correct diagnosis of PCOS a woman must have at least two of the following 3 criteria:

  • Testosterone excess
  • Abnormal ovulation patterns
  • Polycystic ovaries on ultrasound
Symptoms

Commonly these result with a woman presenting with the some of the following symptoms:

  • Male pattern hair growth
  • Obesity
  • Difficulty losing weight
  • Irregular or non-existent menstrual cycle
  • Heavy bleeding
  • Discoloration or darkening of skin, skin folds or skin tags
  • Cystic acne
  • Oily skin
  • Alopecia
Blood Tests

To correctly diagnose PCOS you should have an ultrasound of your ovaries and the following blood tests:

  • Fasting blood glucose
  • Fasting insulin
  • Fasting leptin
  • Testosterone
  • SHBG
  • LH
  • TSH
  • fT4
  • fT3
  • Prolactin
  • Vitamin D urinary iodine
  • Blood lipid profile

These tests may be ordered by Kylie, your GP or your fertility specialist.

75 % of PCOS sufferers experience fertility issues. This is mostly associated with failure to ovulate or late ovulation. Sadly miscarriage rates increase if ovulation is later than day 17 of the menstrual cycle. This has a greater effect if ovulation is later than day 20 and greatly increases after day 22. This is where the graphing of the cycle and the use of herbal and nutritional medicine is invaluable in not only helping conception but reducing miscarriage.

You may like to start to chart your menstrual cycle by downloading our temperature graph and menstrual symptoms diary, or alternatively you could download fertility friend to your phone to keep a track of your menstrual cycle.

Insulin resistance is best treated with a low GI diet, weight loss and herbal/nutritional therapy. A 5% to 10% weight loss results in a significant reduction in ovarian volume and the number of micro follicles per ovary. If you suffer from PCOS you will find that weight loss is better achieved with the use of effective PCOS management in Australia and herbal medicine remedy to reduce insulin levels, support healthy hormonal balance and to help the body to burn fat. Kylie’s favourite herbal remedies for PCOS include Peony and Licorice, Thuja and Gymnema.

Stress management including herbal/nutritional support, meditation and exercise will also contribute to better management of PCOS. The use of Magnesium and the B group vitamins along with herbs such as Withania, Ginseng, Chamomille, and Rehmannia will all help the body to cope with stress. Whilst traditionally we may use Gymnema, Fenugreek, chromium and magnesium to contribute to insulin sensitivity.

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