Polycystic Ovary Syndrome & Infertility

Worldwide, the incidence of PCOS in women aged 17 to 45 years is estimated to be between 5.5% and 12.6%. Depending on the diagnostic criteria utilized, the incidence in India ranges from 8.2% to 22.5%. PCOS is one of the major factors of female infertility.


Polycystic Ovary Syndrome & Infertility

8 Mins
Updated on:
February 21, 2023
Female Infertility

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome & Infertility

What is PCOS?


The most prevalent endocrine disorder that affects women is polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). PCOS is a heterogeneous group of signs and symptoms that, when taken together, form a spectrum of a disorder. For some women, PCOS presents as a mild disturbance of endocrine (hormonal), reproductive (fertility), and metabolic function. For others, it manifests as a severe disturbance of these functions. There has been substantial discussion about the definition of PCOS, which appears to have multiple underlying causes. Menstrual cycle irregularities, hyperandrogenism (increased levels of male hormones), and obesity are important PCOS characteristics, however symptoms and indicators in women with the condition vary widely.

What are the Possible Signs and Symptoms of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome

Symptoms of PCOS

1. Menstrual disturbance (unusual or irregular menstruation)

2. Acne and facial hair growth : hyperandrogenism (increased male hormone levels).

3. Fertility issues (ovulatory dysfunction)Obesity may make PCOS symptoms worse.

4. PCOS ovaries with or without symptoms on ultrasound scan.

5. An irregular or absent menstrual cycle is caused by anovulation, a failure to release an egg each month.Hormonal (Endocrine) Disturbances Luteinizing hormone (LH), normal or slightly reduced follicle stimulating hormone (FSH), Luteinizing hormone (LH), normal or slightly reduced follicle stimulating hormone (FSH),  Hypothyroidism and ProlactinPossible PCOS Late Effects Diabetes MellitusHypertension; dyslipidaemia (abnormal lipid/cholesterol profile) ( Increased blood pressure )Breast cancer; endometrial carcinoma (uterine lining cancer); cardiovascular illness (heart disease);

How to diagnose PCOS?

To identify this issue, tests are run on:

1. a thorough medical history;

2. a physical examination;

3. a pelvic ultrasound showing enlarged ovaries and several tiny cysts;  

4. blood tests showing a hormonal profile

Why does PCOS occur?

The precise cause is unknown. The following elements could be involved:

1. High insulin levels: Insulin is a hormone that controls the body's sugar levels. In order to overcome this resistance, the bodies of many women with PCOS produce higher levels of insulin than normal. Insulin resistance may cause blood sugar levels to rise. Increased insulin may boost androgen production, disrupting the ovulation and menstrual cycles.

2. Genetics: Research has linked a number of genes to PCOS, pointing to a possible familial connection.

3. Low-grade inflammation and autoimmune: PCOS-afflicted females may experience low-grade inflammation and autoimmunity. The polycystic ovaries may produce more androgen (male hormone) as a result of this.

What are the treatment options for females with PCOS?

Losing weight is very much advised if you have PCOS and are overweight or obese because it may normalize your hormone levels. Ovulation (the release of the egg from the ovary) and regular menstrual periods may be restored with weight loss. Regular periods can be restored for PCOS patients who don't want to get pregnant by using the following drugs:

1. Oral contraceptives may be suggested to bring on regular periods.

2. Progestogen tablets can be taken monthly or every three to four months to cause withdrawal bleeding and keep the endometrial lining thin (uterine lining)

3. The Mirena Coil works by releasing progesterone locally within the uterus, helping to preserve a thin endometrial lining (uterine lining). Over time, this may lead to no cycles while keeping the endometrium thin.By restoring regular periods and maintaining a thin endometrium the risk of developing endometrial carcinoma (cancer of the uterine lining ) will be significantly reduced.What are the treatment options for infertility in females with PCOS?

Anovulation is the main factor contributing to infertility in women with PCOS ( failure to release an egg every month). Medication is needed to trigger ovulation if lifestyle modifications such a balanced diet, exercise, and weight loss have not successfully restored regular ovulation and regular menstrual cycles.The following drugs may be used to trigger ovulation:

4. Oral anti-oestrogens such as Clomiphene are typically tried first. In the early stages of the menstrual cycle, it is prescribed. To monitor the effectiveness of the medication and rule out multiple follicular development, which increases the risk of multiple pregnancy, ultrasound examination of the ovaries is indicated. Letrozole is an oral drug that can be used to stimulate ovulation in PCOS-afflicted women.If oral medicines have failed to induce ovulation, gonadotropins may be necessary. Subcutaneous injection is the method used to give gonadotropins.

5. Metformin: Type 2 diabetes is treated with this oral medicine. It raises insulin sensitivity and subsequently lowers insulin levels, which is advantageous for PCOS patients who have insulin resistance.

6. In-Vitro Fertilisation (IVF) is pregnancy assistance for females with PCOS if the aforementioned treatments are unsuccessful.If you have any PCOS symptoms, it's crucial to consult your doctor right away so they can get a timely and correct diagnosis. The prevention of PCOS's potential long-term consequences depends on early identification and therapy of PCOS. Your healthcare professional will go over all of the treatment choices with you and create a management strategy tailored to your needs.

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Is IVF hard on women’s bodies?

You will have much more hormones rushing through your body than usual as a result of all the hormone injections required during IVF. You might feel cranky, bloated, or even high libido as a result of that. It's not uncommon for women to gain a little weight. Hormone injections can affect your weight and also your hunger levels, along with changes in your emotions. Expect some changes to happen in your body and mind.

What is the cost of IVF treatment in Jananam?

Please check the pricing page.

Can I smoke during IVF treatment?

Smoking is a strict "No" if you’re looking to get pregnant. This is applicable to both men and women. Smoking has shown to have a big impact on the quality of the sperms and eggs and hence it’s advisable that you quit smoking if you’re planning to start a family.

What are the steps involved in IVF treatment?

A step by step guide to IVF treatment is conveyed in this video by our Medical Director – Dr Vani Sundarapandian..

Can I work and commute when undergoing IVF treatment?

This can only be suggested on a case to case basis depending on the various factors associated with the patient, such as age, medical condition, quality of eggs/sperms etc.

At what age is IVF most successful?

IVF success rates vary as it depends on multiple factors. One of these major factors is age. The success rate is almost 55-60% in women who are less than 35 years of age. The success rate goes down as the woman’s age increases. Ideally, the 20s and 30s are the best age to have a successful IVF.

How do I prepare my body for IVF?

It's pretty doable. Begin taking prenatal supplements, keep a healthy weight, stop using drugs, drinking alcohol, or smoking, avoid serious infectious infections, which could cause a delay in treatment, and reduce consuming caffeine. Basically, maintain a healthy body by eating healthy and exercising regularly.

How much of infertility is because of the man?

1/3 of infertility cases are attributable to men, 1/3 are attributable to women, and the rest are a combination of male and female factors or unexplained problems.

Do IVF hormones make you emotional?

Some women report having minimal to no reactions, while others say they are extremely anxious or even depressed. So be aware that you can experience an emotional response to the hormone changes; if you do, this is completely normal and okay.

How long should I try before deciding to see a fertility specialist?

If you’re unable to conceive after a year of actively trying to conceive, then you should consult a doctor.

Is IVF painful?

IVF shots are typically not too painful. Although there is a stinging feeling, it is not bothersome. The needles are too thin to cause any pain. When you inject the medication, you can invite your partner or perhaps a friend to stand by your side.

Can i drink alcohol during IVF treatment?

Drinking is strictly discouraged while prepping for IVF. Some studies have shown that alcohol may have an effect on the outcome of IVF.

Do IVF babies look different?

The woman becomes pregnant once the embryo is implanted in her uterus, and after a certain amount of time, she gives birth to her child. IVF children are just like any other children. In fact, it is impossible to tell an IVF baby apart from other kids unless you are told.

What is the cost of IVF treatment in Jananam?

To know more about the cost of IVF treatment, please visit our pricing page.

Are IVF babies always healthy?

Yes is the clear-cut response. With the use of in vitro fertilization (IVF), millions of healthy children have been born. There are no immediate or long-term risks to the child's health associated with the procedure. The method of conception is the main distinction between IVF babies and regular babies.

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