Helping Your Teen: Pcos From A Parent's Perspective
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), Contraception, Pregnancy and Birth Rachel is 16 years old and has been suffering for several years with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome. Our journey through this condition has been a difficult one, filled with moments of despair. She is undergoing treatment for it now and is “a work in progress.” Neither of us wants anyone to ever suffer as she has. Getting the diagnosis was a nightmare. Rachel had always been a happy, carefree child. She excelled at school and sports. A gifted athlete, she was on several competitive teams at once. She stayed busy and happy. When she started her periods, things changed. She had horrible cramps. Thinking we were helping her, we put her on a birth control pill. After several months we noticed her mood was getting lower and lower. We didn’t realize that she is sensitive to progestins in the pill and that they can cause depression. Not one of the four doctors we consulted told us this common information. They wanted to prescribe antidepressants without trying to find the reason for the depression. We took her off the pill. The depression went away immediately. We did not know the horror that was to follow. Within two months her body was totally out of control. She was losing hair on her head, growing hair on her body, and rapidly gaining weight! This was hard for an athlete who had always been thin! She works out with a trainer and one week gained ten pounds. We were all stunned! The doctors were of no help. They wanted to blame it all on stress! My husband and I starting researching everything we could. We had never heard of PCOS. I read a book by Dr. Elizabeth Vliet called Screaming To Be Heard: Hormonal Connections That Women Suspect and Doctors Ignore.” I was convinced her problems were hormonal. We m Continue reading >>
Pcos And Metformin – Is This Treatment Right For You?
Here at Flo Living headquarters I speak with many women suffering with PCOS who have either been offered Metformin and decided against it or have tried Metformin and it’s not worked for them. If you have a diagnosis of PCOS it’s very likely that at some point your doctor has suggested Metformin. I personally was what would be considered the “perfect” candidate for this treatment when I was in my 20s and suffering with PCOS – overweight, struggling with acne and a complete lack of periods. However, I never tried it myself – instead I created a protocol for myself that became Flo Living. I’ve since helped many women manage their PCOS successfully with this protocol, just as I did my own diagnosis. That said, I speak with women so often about the Metformin option that I want to share my perspective with you. Although I do not dismiss the option completely, I do have some caveats and concerns. What is Metformin? Metformin is a first-line medication for those suffering with type 2 diabetes. It is also presented as a treatment for PCOS sufferers who are also overweight or obese. Not all PCOS sufferers have weight gain as a symptom, it depends on the kind of PCOS. Women with the kind of PCOS that causes weight gain are usually insulin resistant. Metformin reduces overall insulin levels. Insulin resistance is when the cells of your body become resistant to the hormone insulin, preventing glucose from entering your cells to be used for energy, and instead causing soaring levels of sugar blood stream bringing about diabetes, pre-diabetes or insulin-resistant PCOS. The connection between insulin and PCOS is blood sugar regulation. We hear about this most commonly with diabetes, but it’s also very important with PCOS. An unstable, constantly spiking and crashing, bl Continue reading >>
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What Should Psychiatrists Know About Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome?
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome in Psychiatry What should the Psychiatrist know? PCOS is the most common endocrine disorder in women of reproductive age and consists of anovulation or menstrual dysfunction and hyperandrogenism. The main criteria are hyperandrogenism, anovulation and ovarian cysts. 2 out of 3 are required for diagnosis after other causes are excluded.  In Australia, it affects 11% of Australian women of reproductive age and 21% of indigenous women. Australian research shows that 89% of women with PCOS saw more than one health professional before their diagnosis was made, 49% took greater than six months to have a diagnosis confirmed. The economic burden of PCOS is approximately $400 million per year in Australia. Other endocrine abnormalities include peripheral insulin resistance, hyperinsulinemia and chronically elevated plasma free estrogen and testosterone levels.  There are many tests that can detect PCOS which includes LH, FSH, total and free testosterone, DHEA-s etc. If you have a high index of suspicion, discuss this with an endocrinologist to decide on which tests to order. In clinical practice women with PCOS often have infertility, difficulty conceiving or menstrual irregularities which is a significant cause of psychological distress, and as a psychiatrist, you may be the only specialist they see due to a mood disorder. Hence it is important for the psychiatrist to be aware of the condition and refer appropriately. If you have a high index of suspicion, discuss this with an endocrinologist to decide on which tests to order. A mother talks about her daughters experience with depression and PCOS here. Furthermore, PCOS is associated with insulin resistance which in turn is associated with psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia and bipola Continue reading >>
Is Depression A Side Effect Of Pcos Or Metformin
Is depression a side effect of PCOS or Metformin If this is your first visit, be sure tocheck out the FAQ by clicking thelink above. You may have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed. To start viewing messages,select the forum that you want to visit from the selection below. Is depression a side effect of PCOS or Metformin I have just been diagnosed with PCOS and I have been really blue and even things that I enjoy doing are now not an interest. I just wanted to know if anyone else had these feelings. About the depression, met. depletes vit B 12. This affects dopamine in the brain, which has to do with mood. This could very well be causing your depression. I was feeling depressed, and found out this info and started taking B complex vitamins and it has helped a lot. Hope this helps! (I copied this from an old post). By the way I had to stop taking Birth control pills, because they made me depressed too. Anxiety; blurred vision; chills; cold sweats; coma; confusion; cool pale skin; cough; depression ; dizziness; fast heartbeat ; fever; headache; increased hunger; nausea; nervousness; nightmares; seizures; shakiness; slurred speech; sneezing; sore throat; unusual tiredness or weakness I'm sorry you're feeling this way. I've had depression in the past, although not related to Met since I wasn't taking it at the time. I started out having days when I just felt really blue and got to the point where I would cry all day and just not want to live anymore. Depression is such a horrible thing and it honestly didn't occur to me to seek help until my family encouraged me to do so. So if you find yourself starting to be really pulled down, I would encourage you to talk to your dr and not let it get the best of you. I hope you feel better soon! Continue reading >>
Pcos, Severe Depression, Anger Due To Metformin Increased Dosage
Pcos, Anxiety & Depression
Questions (this Ask contains three questions): First, your website says it is not recommended to take your herbal formula [PMS Comfort] for PMDD while on birth control pills. But what can be done in a case where my teenage daughter, Dorothy, MUST take birth control pills because without it, she gets severe acne on her face due to PCOS diagnosed by our endocrinologist who put her on Orthotricylen Lo, Spironolactone, & Metformin (other symptoms she had for this PCOS diagnosis is hirsutism (excessive hairiness), high testosterone level, irregular periods, along with acne). About two and one-half years ago, because her prescriptions don’t help with her emotional and cognitive symptoms, I took her to a naturopath who took her off the Orthotricyclen Lo and put her on natural progesterone cream. By 4-5 months, her face became densely covered with cystic painful deep acne. Needless to say she had to go right back on the Ortho which cleared up the acne within months but she had red scars for a long time and still has the pock marks on her face from it. I am afraid to ever have her come off that prescription ever again because her face can't take anymore. I fear it has already permanently damaged her pretty face for life. So if she is stuck on Ortho for acne, can she take your herbal formula? She is not sexually active and is not taking the Ortho for birth control. My second question is about the timing of the symptoms. She used to have at least 2 better weeks out of the month but this past year, it has stretched out almost to the majority of the month and the symptoms are still always much stronger the week or two before her period. I don't know if the PCOS is contributing to her symptoms during the rest of the month or if it is all from the PMDD. I took her to a gynecologist Continue reading >>
Mood Swings/depression With Pcos Treatment?
Mood swings/depression with pcos treatment? Mood swings/depression with pcos treatment? Hi all, this is my first post. I was just diagnosed with PCOS about 3 months ago and was prescribed Metformin and Seasonique, which have helped a lot with the sugar cravings and the constant weight gain I had for over a year. I have actually lost 10 lbs. The bad part of it is, I feel like I've never been a woman before now :-) I just have such wild mood swings. I get extremely depressed about how I look and normal girl stuff, then I get really angry and frustrated, and then I'll be fine five minutes later, etc. I feel crazy! These feelings aren't every day, I'll have a few normal days, and then 3 or 4 of these "crazy days," where my mood changes every five minutes. I assure you all, I never feel the need to hurt myself or anything of that sort, but I am wondering if this is normal for the first few months. I had bad side effects during the first week of metformin (stomach-related, not mood), and now it's fine. I had zero mood swings for the first month on seasonique, but starting in the second month (I'm almost into the 3rd now) was when I started having mood swings. Is this worth it? I am really loving the seasonique, but my boyfriend (who is amazing and completely understanding!) very gently suggested that if the mood swings don't improve, I may want to ask my doctor about starting a mild antidepressant, and I have to agree that it may be a necessity. I hate taking pills, it took me a week to start taking metformin at first because I so hate taking pills and relying on them, but if it means the mood swings will stop I think I would rather take pills. Could some of you give me your thoughts on this, and share similar experiences and what was done about it, etc.? Thanks for reading Continue reading >>
Got The Blues? Pcos And Depression
Since starting PCOS Diet Support, I have had the privilege of connecting with so many women with PCOS, all of them with stories different to my own, but with so many common threads. One of the topics that seems to keep raising is head is “PCOS and Depression”. So, I thought that this week we could tackle the topic of Depression and work out if a PCOS diet can also help with this more hidden and sneaky symptom. Before we all get too depressed (excuse the pun!) with this topic, let me suggest a cup of spearmint tea to raise your spirits and lower your testosterone. We are going to find the silver lining so bear with me. A free 6 lesson course that has helped women with PCOS around the world learn how to see lasting changes in their PCOS symptoms. Ready to join? As you may know, I went off birth control in 2009 in the hopes of conceiving. For at least 4 or 5 months after stopping the pill and before I was diagnosed, I went into a deep depression. There was no colour to my days and I was living in survival mode, going through the motions from one day to the next. My marriage started to suffer as I didn’t find any joy in my marriage, my family or my work. I didn’t even realize that I felt as bad as I did. Things finally reached breaking point and I needed some answers. That’s when my research began. As I investigated PCOS further, I knew that I was depressed and I needed help. I will never forget that feeling of hopelessness and despair. Being diagnosed with PCOS, although devastating, also gave me an action plan. I knew the nature of the beast and I could then find the best means for controlling it. As I made diet and lifestyle changes, my mood began to improve and stabilize. Don’t get me wrong, I still sometimes wake up irritable (and by irritable, I mean I can Continue reading >>
Anxiety And Depression In Polycystic Ovary Syndrome: A Systematic Review And Meta-analysis
Anxiety and depression in polycystic ovary syndrome: a systematic review and meta-analysis Correspondence address. Tel: +44-20-7040-5060; Fax: +44-20-7040-8580; E-mail: [email protected] Search for other works by this author on: Human Reproduction, Volume 26, Issue 9, 1 September 2011, Pages 24422451, J.A. Barry, A.R. Kuczmierczyk, P.J. Hardiman; Anxiety and depression in polycystic ovary syndrome: a systematic review and meta-analysis, Human Reproduction, Volume 26, Issue 9, 1 September 2011, Pages 24422451, Our aim was to assess differences in anxiety and depression between women with and without (controls) polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of published literature comparing women with PCOS to control groups on anxiety and depression. Electronic databases were searched up to 17 December 2010. The inverse variance method based, as appropriate, on a random- or fixed-effects model in Review Manager, Version 5 was used to analyse the data. Twelve comparative studies were included; all studies assessed depression (910 women with PCOS and 1347 controls) and six also assessed anxiety (208 women with PCOS and 169 controls). Analysis revealed higher depression (Z = 17.92, P < 0.00001; Hedges g = 0.82; 95% CI 0.730.92) and anxiety (Z = 5.03, P < 0.00001; Hedges g = 0.54; 95% CI 0.330.75) scores in the participants with, than without, PCOS. Studies controlling for BMI showed a smaller difference between women with PCOS and controls on anxiety and depression scores than studies not controlling for BMI. Women with PCOS on average tend to experience mildly elevated anxiety and depression, significantly more than women without PCOS. Women with PCOS with lower BMI tended to have slightly lower anxiety and depression scores, sugges Continue reading >>
Can Antidepressants Improve Pcos? | Pcos.com
PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome), also called PCOD (Polycystic Ovary Disorder) is a condition that 5-10% of women experience. If you suffer from PCOS you face a higher risk of depression than the general population. Doctors often prescribe anti-depressant medications to treat this debilitating symptom, PCOS Depression. But are these medications safe? Are they safe for women trying to become pregnant? And since antidepressants arent effective for all patients, what are the alternatives if these medications fail? Conventional western medicine doesnt approach PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) as a single condition to be managed since there are no PCOS drugs that solve the problem. They instead use a PCOS treatment that focuses on the collection of symptoms and treat them individually. Antidepressants can control some PCOS symptoms, but a natural treatment for PCOS is most often helpful. It works best when coupled with lifestyle changes like a healthy diet, more exercise, and/or herbal supplements to combat an underlying influence of PCOS, which is Insulin Resistance. Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is an endocrine disorder that results from an increased amount of androgens, or male hormones, in your body. Many experts point to Insulin Resistance as the underlining problem. I.R., as its also known, is a condition that reduces the sensitivity of your bodys cells to insulin. Insulin allows the glucose (blood sugar) into your bloodstream that creates energy. During insulin resistance, these same cells slowly become immune when your insulin spikes or surges too often. These spikes are usually caused by a daily diet of refined carbohydrates. In the end, PCOS symptoms are the result. Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome goes by many names: Stein-Leventhal Syndrome, Chronic Anovulator Continue reading >>
Common Treatment Of Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome And Major Depressive Disorder: Case Report And Review.
Common treatment of polycystic ovarian syndrome and major depressive disorder: case report and review. We present the case of a young woman with treatment-resistant major depression, who presented to the Mood Disorders Clinic with a Hamilton Psychiatric Rating Scale for Depression (HAM-D-21) score of 28, after a year-long treatment with Effexor-XR. The patient also had untreated Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). The resolution of her depressive symptoms resulted from the treatment for PCOS with metformin and spironolactone. The patient remained euthymic 5 months after discontinuation of the antidepressant while continuing therapy for PCOS. We briefly overview of the pertinent literature of the pathophysiology of PCOS and affective disorders, highlighting an overlap in phenotypical presentations between these two disorders. Dysregulation of the hypothalamo-pituitary axis and various end organ systems are implicated in both PCOS and affective disorders. As such, several clinical and biochemical markers are common to both disorders, namely insulin resistance, obesity, and hyperandrogenism. In addition, these metabolic abnormalities are interrelated, causing women with PCOS or affective disorders to get caught in a "vicious cycle" of hormonal dysregulation. The case report presented here illustrates how treatment of symptoms such as insulin resistance and hyperandrogenism can lead to remission of major depressive disorder and PCOS. We suggest that through treatment of underlying metabolic defects, both the mood of the patient and the metabolic condition of PCOS can be assisted. Continue reading >>
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome: A Complex Condition With Psychological, Reproductive And Metabolic Manifestations That Impacts On Health Across The Lifespan
Polycystic ovary syndrome: a complex condition with psychological, reproductive and metabolic manifestations that impacts on health across the lifespan 1Jean Hailes Clinical Research Unit, School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Monash University, Clayton, Australia 2Diabetes Unit, Southern Health, Clayton, Australia 1Jean Hailes Clinical Research Unit, School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Monash University, Clayton, Australia 2Diabetes Unit, Southern Health, Clayton, Australia Received 2010 Jan 13; Accepted 2010 Jun 30. Copyright 2010 Teede et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( ), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is of clinical and public health importance as it is very common, affecting up to one in five women of reproductive age. It has significant and diverse clinical implications including reproductive (infertility, hyperandrogenism, hirsutism), metabolic (insulin resistance, impaired glucose tolerance, type 2 diabetes mellitus, adverse cardiovascular risk profiles) and psychological features (increased anxiety, depression and worsened quality of life). Polycystic ovary syndrome is a heterogeneous condition and, as such, clinical and research agendas are broad and involve many disciplines. The phenotype varies widely depending on life stage, genotype, ethnicity and environmental factors including lifestyle and bodyweight. Importantly, PCOS has unique interactions with the ever increasing obesity prevalence worldwide as obesity-induced insulin resistance significantly Continue reading >>
Metformin Side Effects For Pcos: 6 Things You Need To Know
Insulin resistance is seen in the majority of women with PCOS. Doctors prescribe metformin for PCOS because it is an effective insulin sensitizer. However, the drug comes with its share of side effects. Let’s look at Metformin side effects for PCOS in detail. Metformin Side Effects For PCOS 1. Malaise Or Physical Discomfort As many as 1 in every 4 women on metformin just does not feel well. There is a feeling of fatigue even without much physical exertion. Sometimes, this fatigue is accompanied with aches that can last for a varying degree of time. While this may not sound too severe, it is one of the most common Metformin side effect for PCOS. 2. Gastrointestinal Distress Gastrointestinal problems is another common Metformin side effect for PCOS (experienced by nearly a third of women taking the drug.) These problems include abdominal pain, nausea, occasional vomiting, loose motions, irregular bowel movements or diarrhea. Bloating and flatulence can be a major source of embarrassment. Anorexia and a sharp metallic taste can play havoc with appetite, especially because eating a healthy diet at the right times is critical for PCOS patients. Heartburn and headaches add to the suffering caused by PCOS symptoms. 3. Anemia Another Metformin side effect for PCOS is a decrease in Vitamin B12 levels because the drug affects the absorption of this vitamin. Vitamin B12 is vital for red blood cell formation. When levels of vitamin B12 go down, you can suffer from anemia. Common symptoms of anemia include tiredness, lightheadedness, and dizziness. Vitamin B12 also plays an important role in many bodily processes. For example, there is evidence of a relationship between low levels of vitamin B12 and an increased risk of heart diseases. 4. Accumulation Of Homocysteine Long-term use Continue reading >>
Metformin And Pcos: Everything You Need To Know
Metformin is a type of medication used to treat Type 2 Diabetes. Because there is a strong link between diabetes and PCOS, metformin is now commonly proscribed to treat PCOS. But should it be? What is the real relationship between metformin and PCOS? Can Metformin used for PCOS help lessen PCOS symptoms? Metformin used for PCOS: The Science PCOS is an infertility condition that often causes acne, facial hair growth, balding, low sex drive, weight gain, difficulty with weight loss, and mental health disturbances such as depression and anxiety in approximately 15% of women. It is also associated with a myriad of health conditions, spanning from diabetes to hypothyroidism and to heart disease. PCOS is, in short, not a condition to sneeze at. PCOS is a condition of hormone imbalance. With PCOS, male sex hormones such as testosterone and DHEA-S rise relative to the female sex hormones estrogen and progesterone. (…Roughly speaking – it’s complicated. For a full-blown account of the science of PCOS and how it affects you, see here.) Elevated testosterone is very often the primary culprit in causing PCOS. (But not always! For one of my most thorough accounts of other things that can cause PCOS, see here.) Insulin causes testosterone levels to rise because insulin tells the ovaries to produce testosterone. Basically, elevated insulin causes elevated testosterone, which causes PCOS. This is where metformin comes into play. Metformin lowers blood sugar levels below what they would otherwise be after a meal. This is because it intervenes with the liver’s interaction with and production of glucose. Insulin is the body’s way of dealing with blood sugar. If blood sugar is lower, then insulin will be lower, and thus testosterone will be lower. Metformin decreases blood sugar, Continue reading >>
Psychiatric Complications In Women With Polycystic Ovary Syndrome Most Often Linked To Menstrual Irregularities
Psychiatric Complications in Women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome Most Often Linked to Menstrual Irregularities Study Examines Mental Health Problems Associated with Different PCOS Symptoms Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), a hormone imbalance that causes infertility, obesity, and excessive facial hair in women, can also lead to severe mental health issues including anxiety, depression, and eating disorders. A study supervised by Columbia University School of Nursing professor Nancy Reame, MSN, PhD, FAAN, and published in the Journal of Behavioral Health Services & Research,identifies the PCOS complications that may be most responsible for psychiatric problems. While weight gain and unwanted body hair can be distressing, irregular menstrual cycles is the symptom of PCOS most strongly associated with psychiatric problems, the study found. We were surprised to find that menstrual abnormalities in women with PCOS was the strongest predictor for mental health issues, particularly when there are so many other symptomslike beard growth and infertilitythat can make a woman feel unfeminine, says senior author Nancy Reame, the Mary Dickey Lindsay Professor of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion at Columbia Nursing. The study findings suggest that we cant treat PCOS effectively unless we pay close attention to any signs of mental distress. The study evaluated psychological symptoms in 126 women diagnosed with PCOS. Participants completed surveys using a standard tool for evaluating mental health, the Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI), and their responses were compared with those of adult women in the general population and of adult women undergoing outpatient psychiatric care. While small, and not a randomized controlled trial, the study offers insight into the psychiatric manif Continue reading >>