Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is when a women has a hormonal imbalance causing multiple symptoms. We often hear of myths about PCOS and wanted to share these myths and explain symptoms of PCOS.
Myth 1: PCOS is associated with infertility
While many people believe if you have PCOS you’re infertile. This is not true. As PCOS is a hormonal imbalance, it can interfere with the growth and release of eggs from the ovaries. Having a hormonal imbalance and irregular periods can make it more difficult to get pregnant, it is still possible. It’s best to speak to a fertility specialist to discuss different methods or medications to help your body ovulate.
Myth 2: PCOS causes weight gain or obesity
Women with PCOS are not more likely to gain weight if they eat a certain amount of food. However, one symptom of PCOS is truncal obesity, also known as apple- shaped obesity. This is where extra weight gain is around the abdominal or truncal area. If you’ve been diagnosed with PCOS and are overweight, speak with your doctor about your weight loss options.
Myth 3: PCOS only occurs in overweight females
This is also not true. PCOS can affect women in all different shapes and sizes, thin or overweight. Though PCOS manifestations are generally worse when you’re overweight or obese.
Myth 4: If you have irregular periods, you have PCOS
One symptom of PCOS is having irregular periods, however having one symptom does not mean you can diagnose yourself with PCOS. There are other symptoms which include, acne, increased hair growth (typically chin, abdomen and back), diabetes and insulin resistant. There are other causes of irregular periods.
Myth 5: Pain is a symptom of PCOS PCOS doesn’t cause pain.
Large ovarian cysts can cause pain but these are not a feature of PCOS. The ovary in a woman with PCOS has many tiny cysts which are not painful.
If you’re still unsure about PCOS, have any questions ask your GP or ask to be referred to a fertility specialist.