One of the leading causes of female infertility in India, Polycystic Ovary Syndrome or PCOS is a severe genetic, reproductive and metabolic disorder and a major health issue that has taken the world of women by storm as it affects at least one in every 10 women in India and approximately 26-27% of women worldwide, with 80% of obese women and 20% of women with a lean frame . The symptoms of PCOS include missed, irregular, infrequent or prolonged periods and excess androgens that cause acne and unwanted body and facial hair in girls.
It increases the risk of other health problems like diabetes and high blood pressure, darkened skin or excess skin on the neck or in the armpits, mood swings, pelvic pain and/or weight gain but not all women suffering from PCOS may have cysts on their ovaries. In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Dr Tanveer Aujla, Senior Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist at Motherhood Hospital in Noida, elaborated, “PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) is a hormonal disorder that affects millions of people. It’s a disorder in which the ovaries create more male hormones than normal (androgens).”
She added, “The woman’s looks, fertility, and the menstrual cycle may all be affected. PCOS can cause irregular or absent menstrual cycles, weight gain, infertility (due to irregular ovulation), acne outbreaks, greasy skin, severe hirsutism (facial and body hair growth), thinning or loss of head hair, and ovarian cysts.”
Fitness tips to overcome pregnancy challenges by battling PCOS:
When you have a variety of possibilities, there is always hope and a way, comforts Dr Tanveer Aujla. Insisting that women can get pregnant while dealing with PCOS but need to make certain lifestyle and eating modifications to help regulate your weight and blood sugar levels, she offered that there is always hope and success rates are fairly high, regardless of the treatment you pick.
Dr Arockia Virgin Fernando, Fertility and IVF Consultant and Gynecologist advises, “A good lifestyle that includes regular exercising, no smoking, alcohol reduction, fewer carbs, less sugar, high protein and a high fibre diet can reduce the effect of PCOS and can help prevent diabetes and preterm labour in pregnancy.”
According to Dr Tanveer Aujla, maintaining your weight, eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly and tracking your ovulation period using certain apps that help you track your periods and monitoring your ovulation, which helps you get a better understanding of which days you will most likely get pregnant, are all important factors in increasing your chances of becoming pregnant.
She pointed out that some women may require medication, in which case it is in your best interest to seek medical advice.