Complications associated with untreated PCOS

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) if not treated or managed well can have long-term health risks, although not all women with PCOS develop these health risks. Regular health checkup is the only way to prevent them or diagnose them at an early stage for a complete cure of the disease.

Women diagnosed with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) need to understand and be aware of the long-term health risks associated with it. Not all women with PCOS develop these health risks, those whose PCOS is not managed well or left untreated are at increased risk of developing these conditions. Thus, it becomes significant to have regular health checkups done. Consult a physician on regular basis throughout your reproductive years and even after menopause. 

Infertility – Most women don’t realize they have PCOS until they visit a doctor to find out why they are not getting pregnant. Infertility or difficulty in conceiving is the most common condition associated with PCOS. In absence of periods, women tend to miss their ovulation dates and hence no pregnancy. PCOS can be due to an imbalance of the hormone or overproduction of the male hormone. Doctors often treat this condition by prescribing birth control pills to regularize the menstruation first and then stopping them. 

Endometrial carcinoma – Women having PCOS likely to develop endometrial cancer later in life. Since menarche, there is a monthly build up of endometrial lining in the uterus, if the women don’t get pregnant, the lining normally shed through menstruation. But in PCOS due to absence or irregular periods, this lining doesn’t get shed and continues to build which can further lead to increased chances of endometrial cancer.

Diabetes – Insulin aids in metabolizing and processing glucose. Insulin resistance or impaired glucose tolerance have been linked to PCOS. High levels of insulin aggravate excess production of testosterone which further causes PCOS. 

Abnormalities in lipids – Higher levels of testosterone in women can cause impaired fatty levels in women with PCOS. It means there is excess build up of fat in women’s body. This increases the bad cholesterol (LDL) and reduces the good cholesterol (HDL) in the body. Increase in bad cholesterol increases the risk of other cardiovascular diseases like stroke, heart attack, cardiac arrest.

Cardiovascular disease – Studies reveal that women having PCOS are more likely to suffer from heart diseases and cardiovascular diseases. PCOS is also associated with weight gain in women. Excess of weight gain or obesity also increases the cardiovascular risks among women.

Obstructive sleep apnea – Obesity and PCOS go hand in hand. PCOS contributes a lot to obesity in women. Obesity is one of the prime causes of obstructive sleep apnea. The only way to prevent this is weight reduction. Weight reduction is also helpful in treating PCOS. 

Although it's hard to reduce weight in PCOS, following a healthy lifestyle that comprises a healthy diet and physical activity can aid in managing PCOS effectively and can prevent all these conditions.

(Disclaimer: The content on this site is for informational purposes only, and should not be taken as professional medical advice.  Always seek the guidance of your doctor or other health professionals for any questions you may have regarding your health or a medical condition.)



Tags : #Health #PCOS #PCOD #PCOSawareness #PCOSmanagement #PCOStreatment #Menstruation #irregularperiods #Femalereproductivedisorder #Medicircle #Smitakumar

About the Author

Renu Gupta

With a background in Pharmacy which is the clinical health science that links medical science with chemistry, I had the desire to mix creativity to these fields. Medicircle provides me an avenue to apply my training in science and interest in creativity together.

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