Polycystic ovary syndrome

Overview of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a relatively common medical condition occurring in five to 10 percent of women. It is defined by higher-than-average levels of androgenic (male) hormones in a female, which cause cysts in the ovaries. PCOS increases the risk of infertility, heart disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure, but various treatment options are available.

While no one knows the root cause of PCOS, experts believe genes play a role. Most women with PCOS have a close female relative with the condition.

If you have a PCOS diagnosis or symptoms of PCOS in NV, CA, or AZ, the health care professionals at Dignity Health are here to help. Find a Doctor near you to start designing a personalized PCOS treatment plan today.

Symptoms of polycystic ovary syndrome

Although the symptoms of PCOS vary from woman to woman, there are a number of PCOS symptoms that you should watch for, including:

  • Irregular menstrual periods
  • Infertility or trouble getting pregnant
  • Hair growth on the face, chest, stomach, back, or toes
  • Obesity
  • Severe acne and oily skin
  • Multiple cysts on the ovaries
  • Patches of thick, dark skin on the neck, arms, breasts, or thighs
  • Sleep apnea, which causes trouble breathing during sleep