Things you need to know while trying to conceive with PCOS

PCOS is a complex hormonal disorder that affects up to one in every five reproductive-aged women which causes ovulation, and low levels of follicle stimulating hormone, which is required for pubertal development and the function of women's ovaries and men's testes.

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Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a highly prevalent hormonal condition among women of reproductive age. PCOS affects up to one in every eight women of reproductive age and is produced by a complex interaction of hormonal imbalances affecting the hypothalamus, pituitary gland, ovaries, and other organs in the body.

Women with PCOS can fail to ovulate, have elevated levels of androgens, and have several tiny cysts on their ovaries. PCOS can lead to missed or irregular menstrual periods, excessive hair growth, acne, infertility, and weight gain. Here’s what you need to know while trying to conceive with PCOS.

1. Difficulty in conception

PCOS does not indicate you cannot conceive. PCOS is one of the most common yet treatable causes of female infertility. But anovulation, or the failure of follicles in the ovaries to produce eggs, is one of the most common difficulties linked with PCOS. This might show as irregularities in menstruation or even an overall lack of periods (amenorrhoea). As you may understand, this would not only make it difficult to predict the timing of your ovulation and schedule intercourse, but it would also sometimes prevent fertilization from taking place.

2. Begin with the basic things

Obesity is a major consequence of the hormonal imbalance associated with PCOS. It has been demonstrated that a minor weight loss of 5-10% of body weight can aid in the regulation of reproductive hormones and ovulation. Lifestyle management should be regarded as a first-line approach, and simple things like good food and frequent exercise may be enough to promote ovulation and assist in conception. Engaging in regular moderate exercise may even help treat or prevent insulin resistance. Being physically active can also help you maintain a healthy weight and lower your risk of diabetes. Something as easy as a 20-30 minute walk after each meal can be beneficial to control PCOS.

3. Options for treatment exist

A balanced lifestyle that includes weight management, regular exercise, and blood sugar control can help improve PCOS symptoms and fertility. Although not everyone with PCOS is overweight, a large proportion of those diagnosed with it are. Excessive weight gain might have an effect on your hormones and irregularise your ovulation. Sometimes you may require medicine to trigger ovulation. This can be accomplished by a variety of approaches, ranging from simple tablets and hormone injections to manage ovarian follicular development or more advanced fertility treatments like IVF. There are highly effective medicines available to address PCOS-related ovulation issues that can help you in achieving successful conception.

4. Screening throughout early pregnancy

PCOS may hamper first- and second-trimester screening tests, as well as pregnancy health. It may also require correction in the estimation of risks connected to aneuploidy screening during the first and second trimesters. Because PCOS can be connected with problems such as insulin resistance as well, which increases your risk of developing gestational diabetes, it is critical to perform an early glucose tolerance test to ensure that your blood sugar levels remain under control. Treatment to help you get pregnant might sometimes increase your risk of having multiple pregnancies, thus an early ultrasound scan is recommended.

5. Enjoy your pregnancy

Despite all of the above-mentioned ‘precautions’, the vast majority of PCOS patients would conceive and deliver a healthy baby. There is no reason why you would not get the same result. Focus on testing for a positive result after your expected period has passed. You’ll be more likely to get an accurate result than if you rely on early pre-period testing methods, which might produce incorrect findings for women with PCOS. As pregnancy is a unique experience, it should always be cherished to the fullest extent possible.

FAQ’s

What is a hormonal imbalance?

A hormonal imbalance occurs when one or more hormones are excessively or insufficiently produced. For many, hormonal imbalances can cause significant changes in the body and lead to illnesses that require treatment. Some hormonal abnormalities are temporary, while others are long-lasting. Furthermore, some hormone abnormalities necessitate treatment in order to maintain physical health, whereas others may not harm your health but have a negative effect on your quality of life.

What to do when you have symptoms of hormone imbalance?

Because your body produces over 50 different hormones, each of which contributes to key physical activities, you may suffer a variety of symptoms based on the hormonal imbalance you have. It’s crucial to note that many of the symptoms might be caused by various diseases, not only hormone imbalances. If you observe a change in your daily health and are having new, persistent symptoms, you should consult your healthcare practitioner – regardless of what you believe the cause is.

How are hormonal abnormalities diagnosed?

Because your endocrine glands produce hormones directly into the bloodstream, doctors usually request blood tests to evaluate your hormone levels. Certain hormone levels fluctuate significantly during the day, so your doctor may prescribe additional tests to assess your levels, such as a glucose tolerance test or an insulin tolerance test. In addition, your provider will ask about your medical history and symptoms, as well as do a physical exam.

What type of doctors deal with hormonal imbalances?

Primary care physicians may identify and treat many hormone disorders, but you may benefit from seeing an endocrinologist. An endocrinologist is a healthcare specialist who specializes in endocrinology, which is the study of hormone-related illnesses. They can diagnose endocrine (hormone) disorders, create treatment and care strategies, and write prescriptions.

How do you treat hormonal imbalance?

Many health issues involving hormonal abnormalities, such as diabetes and thyroid disease, necessitate medical intervention. Many nutritional supplements sold in stores promise to address various hormonal imbalances, but only a few have been clinically confirmed to be effective. Always consult with your healthcare practitioner before taking supplements. Aside from medical treatment, your provider may offer lifestyle adjustments to assist manage a hormonal imbalance, such as reducing stress and engaging in regular exercise.

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