PCOS - Treating PCOS
Our goal is to help decrease or eliminate PCOS symptoms, increase quality of life and ultimately, help you feel better overall. Options to treat PCOS can include lifestyle modifications such as weight loss and medications such as birth control pills, metformin, androgen blockers and ovulation induction medications.
Treatments are aimed to help:
- Lessen excess androgens
- Improve insulin resistance
- Regulate menses (to prevent excess buildup of the lining of the uterus and decrease the risk of cancer)
- Decrease unwanted hair growth
- For those who wish to conceive, become pregnant
An individualized approach is taken for all patients dependent on their current life stage. Specific protocols are developed with the patient’s lifestyle in mind and customized to meet your specific needs.
Once you decide to take the first step and schedule a consultation, it will be important for you to prepare.
- Write down the symptoms you are experiencing and include the frequency and onset of the symptoms.
- List any measures you have tried to treat your symptoms and whether they helped
- Make a list of recent changes to your routines, habits, environment and lifestyle
- Bring a list of medications including the name, strength and dosing instructions
- Be aware of your family history so hereditary factors may be evaluated
- Obtain copies of any medical records from other providers you have seen including recent bloodwork or testing
- Make notes about how you are feeling and sleeping
A thorough discussion of your personal health history is a key component to the evaluation process. Expect to have a physical exam including monitoring of blood pressure and calculation of BMI (body mass index). Examination for areas of unusual or thickened hair growth is also a component of the health provider’s review. It is recommended you do not shave for a few days prior to your initial visit so natural hair growth may be evaluated. Blood tests will also be ordered to check your hormones, cholesterol and glucose levels. It may be determined that a vaginal ultrasound is needed to obtain images of the pelvic region, examination of the ovaries for cysts and to check your endometrium (lining of the uterus). Vaginal ultrasounds are particularly important for those who have irregular menses. A pelvic exam may also need to be conducted.
The results of this testing will be instrumental in the development of your plan of care. At your follow up visit your results will be reviewed in depth and a protocol developed to begin addressing your symptoms. Routine monitoring and visits will continue, and you may be asked to personally keep a journal tracking your progress. This could include any changes you notice in between visits, environmental or other factors that may contribute to your symptoms and/or blood pressure monitoring, etc.