In order to diagnose PCOS, the doctor will need a detailed medical and Gynaecological history. In addition, the doctor may perform a physical examination, which will include blood testing and in some cases an ultrasound. The current criteria for the diagnosis of PCOS include:
- Signs of excess androgens or male hormones in the form of excess hair growth or blood tests that show elevated levels of androgen.
- Polycystic Ovaries.
- Besides the above conditions, problems with the pituitary, thyroid, or adrenal glands may also be considereds.
Through the history, physical exam, and blood testing your physician will have enough information to diagnose PCOS or determine any other cause for your symptoms
Unfortunately, at this time there is no cure for PCOS. However, with proper treatment many of the symptoms can be controlled and possibly be even eliminated. With appropriate treatment hirsutism, acne, irregular periods, weight gain, and infertility can be treated. Although there is no cure, all women with PCOS should seek the care of a physician to optimize their health and prevent the progression of the symptoms.
Women with PCOS generally have irregular, infrequent, or even absent ovulation. Without ovulation there is no egg or ovum that is available for fertilization. Due to the abnormal hormonal levels, the endometrium, or the inside lining of the uterus, does not develop normally in women with PCOS. Therefore, even if a rare ovulation was to occur and the egg was fertilized, the endometrium may not be properly developed to allow for the attachment and growth of the embryo. This may explain the increased risk of miscarriage in women with PCOS.
There is no specific title that guarantees that a doctor is knowledgeable in the diagnosis and treatment of hirsutism and PCOS. Many board-certified reproductive endocrinologists are familiar with these disorders, and these physicians may serve as your first line of consultation.
The removal of ovarian cysts is not an effective way to treat PCOS. Cysts on the ovaries are the result of hormonal imbalance that begins with the production of excess insulin. This over abundance of insulin causes an increase in male hormones, which eventually create the cysts. As a result, removing the cyst does not remove the problem but just a symptom.