A prominent cause of depression (often ignored and left untreated) and one of the most common hormonal disorders in women is Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). One in 5 women suffers from Poly cystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS).
Dr Kamna Nagpal, Associate Director Obstetrics and Gynaecology Max Hospital Mohali said that POLYCYSTIC OVARIAN (PCOS) is the commonest hormonal disorder in women in which the eggs in the ovaries are not released but develop small cysts in their ovaries. She said that PCOS could be a result of both inherent (genetic) and external (environmental) causes and is affected by our lifestyle.
Studies have shown that one in five women in India suffers from Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), with rates as high as up to 22.5 % in the female population. These rates are higher in urban population as compared to the rural population.
What happens in PCOS?
In PCOS there develops an imbalance of female hormones (oestrogens) and male hormones (androgens). Normally the ovary makes a tiny amount of male hormone (androgens) but in PCOS there is increased production of male hormones which results in patient getting PCOS.
PCOS can cause:
- Facial and body hair
- Obesity, which is cosmetically very distressing for young women
- Suppression of egg formation it further results in menstrual irregularity and infertility
If the patients suffering from PCOS become pregnant they have an increased incidence of miscarriage (twice the risk of normal pregnant women) as well as the risk of developing pregnancy complications like gestational diabetes, pregnancy induced hypertension, preterm delivery as well as neonatal morbidity and mortality.
Long term consequences of this disease include sleep apnea, a disorder in lipid profile (cholesterol, triglycerides) endometrial cancer or cardiovascular diseases.
Know the impact of PCOS
There is a tremendous negative psychological impact on patients of PCOD who have weight gain, excess hair growth on body and face, pimples, hair loss as well as inability to conceive. Approximately 34% of women with PCOS have depression as compared to 7% in general population and 45% of these patients have anxiety as compared to 18% of general population. It has been shown that the longer it takes to diagnose and treat PCOS, the more likely they will be to develop depression and anxiety related disorders.
This may affect their quality of life by:
- Disrupting eating and sleeping patterns
- Reduced motivation
- Negative self-image
- Low self-confidence
- Mood swings
- Feeling of worthlessness
- Negative Social Relationships
The treatment depends on the age and severity of symptoms. Due to its complex nature, we have to tailor the treatment to every individual patient.