Are you suffering from persistent acne, unwanted thick hair growth, thinning of scalp hair, weight gain, dark underarms, irregular menses? These may well be the signs of an underlying polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS).
Let us decode in easy language, what exactly PCOS is and how does it affect our skin, hair and body as whole.
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder affecting women of reproductive age (14 to 50). In this condition, ovaries develop large cysts which secrete excess hormones (androgens) which affect multiple organs of the body leading gynaecological, dermatological and metabolic disorders.
This may be due to genetics or more commonly due to lifestyle associated metabolic syndrome which is getting more and more common with recent times.
There are 3 sets of problems a woman with PCOS can face.
Excess male hormonal levels in the body can manifest as
- Severe acne commonly seen on jawline or chin area where routine acne treatment often fails. This can be earliest signal of PCOS in young women.
- Excessive unwanted facial hair, thick hair growth in the central part of chest, nipple area, abdominal area, lower back and upper part of inner thighs (hirsutism)
- Thinning of scalp hair mainly in crown area causing widening of partition. (Female pattern hair loss – Read More). Scalp feels oilier and dandruff is more common.
- The skin on neck, underarms get dark, thick and velvety in texture (acanthosis nigricans). Skin tags also start appearing in these areas.
- Irregular periods: People with PCOS typically have irregular or missed periods as a result of not ovulating. Infrequent periods are a common sign of PCOS. However, some women who despite suffering from PCOS can still have regular periods.
- PCOS can disrupt a woman’s menstrual cycles and make it harder to get pregnant. PCOS is a leading cause of female infertility.
- Pelvic pain. Pelvic pain may occur during menses, along with heavy bleeding.
Women with untreated PCOS are found to have tendency to gain weight and obesity, easy fatiguability and higher chances of developing type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels and heart diseases/ strokes.
Many girls with PCOS present with dermatological complaints like stubborn acne, Hirsutism or female pattern hair loss. Menstrual irregularity may or may not be associated in all the cases. After thorough evaluation, they may have high hormonal levels in their blood and ultrasonography examination may show large cysts in ovaries.
Treatment of PCOS is not all about making your menstrual cycles regular.
We usually follow comprehensive treatment approach which involves other specialities like Endocrinologist, Gynaecologist and Nutritionist.
Diet, exercise and lifestyle modifications are mainstay in the management of PCOS.
Oral medicines including nutritional supplements are usually added which help reduce excess hormonal levels or their effect on body.
ACNE TREATMENT – Acne with PCOS needs a different approach and longer duration of treatment than regular acne. But consistent treatment with lifestyle and diet modification we achieve very good results.
ADVANCED PEELING TREATMENTS work very well for dark underarms and neck, acne and acne marks
LASER HAIR REMOVAL is a boon for unwanted hair growth on the face & body and plays a very important role to face the world with confidence.
HAIR REGROWTH TREATMENTS for scalp hair thinning involve GFC hair regrowth treatments, mesotherapy, LLLT and micro needling.