Polycystic ovary syndrome affects many women, as it is a hormonal condition that causes irregular ovulation. Women with PCOS produce more androgens than normal in their body, which can also cause ovulation to stop all together, making it exceedingly difficult for women to get pregnant. Speaking with a fertility specialist, can help you with the next steps.
If you have PCOS, you are not alone, as nearly 1 in every 10 women are afflicted. If you are hoping to get pregnant with PCOS, here are some answers below:
What Causes PCOS?
Unfortunately, the cause of PCOS is unknown, but many research experts believe that genetics could play a role with PCOS. Additionally, some believe that insulin also could be linked to PCOS, because insulin controls the way sugar and other foods are transformed into energy. Those with PCOS also have a surplus of insulin in their bodies.
There are a wide variety of symptoms attributed to PCOS, such as infertility (the most common), irregular menstrual cycles, increased hair growth, cysts on ovaries, acne, weight gain, pelvic pain, and depression, among others.
PCOS can cause infertility because the ovaries do not make enough of the hormones the egg needs to reach full maturation. The process begins, but ovulation does not actually occur. Irregular ovulation makes it extremely difficult for women to get pregnant, as they never know when their bodies are fertile. In the cases that a woman’s body never ovulates, natural conception is nearly impossible.
However, while it is difficult for women with PCOS to conceive naturally, it is very likely women will be able to conceive with fertility treatments. There are many treatments available, thus it is only a matter of which treatments will be the most effective for a woman.
The options for PCOS fertility treatments include, , lifestyle changes to trim weight, oral medication, injectable medication and in vitro fertilization. While the PCOS fertility treatment costs vary, many women have had success in conceiving after undergoing one of these treatments. For most women, in vitro fertilization has been the most effective, especially in women under 35.
For women over 35, treatment can be a bit more difficult, for the body is reaching an age where it is not as fertile as it once was. In fact, women without PCOS have trouble conceiving after age 35, thus those with PCOS may find it can take a few months to a few years to conceive.
If you are having trouble conceiving, your specialist may have you tested for PCOS to see if that is the reason for infertility. There are a few tests you will have to undergo, including a medical history evaluation, physical exam, , blood test, and an ultrasound of the vagina and ovaries.
If your doctor does diagnose you with PCOS, there are many ways to treat it.
While pregnancy can be a bit more difficult with PCOS, it is certainly possible. For more information, consult with one of our physicians at Utah Fertility Center.