AYA & Gynecology
Almost one out of every 10 teen girls and young women has polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). This condition is a hormone imbalance that can cause irregular periods, unwanted hair growth, and acne. The condition can be mild or severe. Treatment is important as teens and women with PCOS also are at higher risk for type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and/or high cholesterol.
A key sign of PCOS is irregular or missed periods because the effects of the condition on the ovaries can make a girl stop ovulating. But other symptoms can include:
The exact cause is not known, but there appears to be a genetic component as it tends to run in families. Although there is no cure for PCOS, effective treatment can control and eliminate many symptoms.
If your doctor suspects your daughter has PCOS, your doctor will do a physical exam to check blood pressure, height and weight, will look at hair growth on the body and will check for patches of darkened skin. Your doctor will also ask you about your daughter’s health, her medicines and her menstrual cycle, and about whether there’s a family history of PCOS.
Additional tests may include:
Although there is no cure for PCOS, treatments are effective and can include one or more of the following: