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Breaking the Silence on Polycystic Ovary Syndrome

Aug 30, 2018 12:00AM ● By Brian Saucedo

By Kelsey Casselbury

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is one of those conditions that no one really discusses. Usually, folks don’t even know that it exists until they or someone they know tries to have a baby—and nothing happens. 

PCOS is one of the leading causes of female infertility, affecting as many as five million women in the U.S. It’s not often discovered until a woman heads to the doctor to find out why she’s not getting pregnant, but it can affect those as young as 11 years old, as well as women long past their childbearing years. Signs include an irregular menstrual cycle, weight gain, and unwanted hair growth on the face, a condition known as hirsutism. Despite the name, many women with PCOS don’t have cysts growing on their ovaries. 

September marks PCOS Awareness Month, a reminder that this disease is a serious health condition. Women who suffer from PCOS not only often have the heartbreaking experience of infertility, but also are more likely to develop more grave health problems such as diabetes, as they are often usually insulin-resistant, as well as high blood pressure, heart disease and stroke. To learn more about PCOS and how it affects women around the U.S., visit the PCOS Awareness Association at