Delhi: Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is a common occurrence in women of the reproductive age group 15-45 yrs. Currently, there is a spike in the number of PCOS cases in teenagers. It is imperative to create that much-needed awareness in children and parents regarding this condition by educating them. Parents need to make sure that children seek timely intervention to manage PCOS, and improve their quality of life.
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) can be characterized by polycystic ovaries (PCO), ovulatory dysfunction that is irregular delayed periods, and Clinical and/or biochemical androgen excess. A girl can have irregular periods, weight gain, increased facial hair or hair in other parts of the body (hirsutism), Alopecia, Acne, and Skin darkening. The prevalence of PCOS among the general population is found to be 15%–20% in women of reproductive age, more so in obese women and around 40% of women with PCOS experience depression and mental stress, particularly young girls. This high level of depression and anxiety may be due to various reasons such as high BMI, self-doubts on Physical appearance and demoralization faced by patients with PCOS in society, which when severe may lead to social withdrawal.
The exact cause of PCOS is unknown. It is a genetic condition that is complex with multiple phenotypes and various appearances. There is an excess of androgen and insulin resistance.
Early diagnosis and treatment along with weight loss reduce the symptoms and risk of long-term complications which may be infertility, Pregnancy complications, type II diabetes, hypertension, Cardiovascular disorder, and malignancy in later life.
Nowadays a large number of girls are diagnosed with PCO but Unlike adult diagnostic criteria those are not sufficient to diagnose PCOS in adolescents, where PCOS even if present can be identified till adulthood.
But It is the need of the hour to throw some light on this topic right from the school days. Children must be explained the consequences of being obese and the various health issues attached to it. Obesity is one of the driving factors of PCOS that is seen due to unhealthy eating habits and lack of exercise,” said Dr. Shivani Sabharwal Gynaecologist and senior consultant, Apollo Spectra, Karol Bagh, Delhi.
Dr. Sabharwal added, “It is now an established fact that maintenance of healthy and active lifestyle can support to lessen both the physiological and the psychological symptoms. So girls who have /or increased likelihood of PCOS need to adhere to a well-balanced diet, exercise daily, stay stress-free and maintain an optimum weight. Take medication suggested by the doctor for heavy or irregular periods and acne when recommended. PCOS induces fertility problems in later life due to a lack of ovulation should be adhered timely. Try to stay in touch with your gynecologist, and go for regular check-ups and follow-ups.”