What is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome?

Women who have Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) have ovaries that produce excessive amounts of male sex hormone androgen and insufficient amount of the hormones needed to trigger ovulation, or the release of an egg from the ovaries. Irregular or absence of menstrual cycles is a common sign of PCOS. Because the ovulation process is not completed, small sac-like cysts are left behind around the edge of the ovaries.

Roughly 10 percent of women are affected by PCOS, according to the Office on Women’s Health, a division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Although hormonal issues are suspected, doctors are not sure of the exact cause of the condition, and there is no single test that provides a definitive diagnosis.

For many women, menstrual problems or difficulty becoming pregnant is their first and only sign that they have PCOS. The number and severity of symptoms of PCOS can vary widely: acne, pelvic pain, hair loss, excessive hair growth, or patches of dark skin. For women with PCOS, early diagnosis is vitally important for better outcome.

“If a woman has infrequent or absent periods, then she is not ovulating efficiently,” explains Dr. Shahryar Kavoussi, a multi-award-winning physician who specializes in female fertility. While PCOS cannot be cured, treatments are available. ” If a diagnosis of PCOS is made based on the clinical criteria, then either weight loss in the obese patient and/or ovulation induction medications may be effective in facilitating efficient ovulation,” says Dr. Kavoussi.

Board certified in both Obstetrics & Gynecology as well as Reproductive Endocrinology & Infertility, Dr. Shahryar Kavoussi offers an array of fertility evaluation and treatments to patients at Austin Fertility and Reproductive Medicine/Westlake IVF. He serves as the medical director of this facility, which has the distinction of being the only private fertility center in the U.S. that provides complete couples care from an in-house medical team comprised of fellowship trained specialists in both male and female infertility.

To schedule a personal consultation with Dr. Shahryar Kavoussi, contact Austin Fertility and Reproductive Medicine/Westlake IVF at (512) 444-1414.