New review aims to help clinicians diagnose and manage polycystic ovarian syndrome

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A new review in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal) is aimed at helping clinicians diagnose and manage polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), an endocrine disorder that affects about 10% of females.

This disorder affects females of reproductive age and is associated with infertility, miscarriage and pregnancy complications. Its long-term health consequences include hypertension, cancer risks, and metabolic and psychological impacts. Patients usually present to health care between ages 18 and 39 years complaining of menstrual cycle irregularities, acne and excessive hair growth, but diagnosis and treatment are often delayed.

The authors of the review hope it will raise awareness of PCOS and help clinicians diagnose and manage the disorder.

Polycystic ovarian syndrome can be treated effectively, and early diagnosis can allow for close monitoring and preventive care."

Dr. Ebernella Shirin Dason, lead author, reproductive endocrinology and infertility fellow at Sinai Health System, Toronto, Ontario

Management of the condition may include support for weight loss, combined hormonal contraceptives and nonhormonal medication like metformin.

Though people with PCOS are more likely to be overweight or obese, the authors caution that "clinicians should be particularly sensitive to weight stigma as patients with PCOS are at risk of dysmorphic body image and disordered eating."

Journal reference:

Dason, E. S., et al. (2024). Diagnosis and management of polycystic ovarian syndrome. CMAJ.


The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
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