Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
I started having irregular periods when I was a senior in high school. Actually, I didn't have one at all. I thought it was GREAT. I didn't have to deal with all those premenstrual symptoms that all those "regular" girls complain about. I didn't have to deal with all that "mess." Yeah, I knew it wasn't normal, but it didn't bother me. Then my junior year of college I went to my OBGYN and she informed me that without a period you could develop endometrial cancer. I was shocked! After several tests, she diagnosed me with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. She didn't give me a lot of information about PCOS, but she did tell me that I would have problems getting pregnant. At the time, that didn't concern me. I went home and started to research PCOS, and realized some of the things I was experiencing was all because of PCOS.
So, What is it?
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is an imbalance of reproductive hormones causing the ovaries to not develop and release eggs during ovulation. PCOS is a common cause of infertility in childbearing women.
- Irregular menstrual cycle - this was my symptom that sent me to the doctor and as I said my doctor was not happy that I went so long (3 years to be exact) without a period. She said anybody who doesn't have a period in 3 months should go see a doctor.
- Overproduction of hair - this explained why I had hair growing on my chin and belly
- Acne - this wasn't a huge problem for me on my face, but on my back and chest
- Thinning hair - didn't have this, Thank God
- Weight gain - This explained why I would try so hard to lose weight and I couldn't. I would look at food and gain weight. PCOS causes insulin resistance, causing you to gain weight and not lose it.
- Darkening of skin - I have this on the nape of my neck. Looks like I haven't bathed.
- Skin tags
- Cysts of the ovaries - mine looked like classic PCOS
As you can see, living with PCOS is not fun, but the most devastating thing about having PCOS is dealing with the infertility.