Childr Health Information

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)

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Topic: Diseases & Conditions

This handout was written to answer some of the questions most often asked about Polycystic Ovary Syndrome or PCOS. Feel free to ask your doctor or nurse to go over any instructions you do not understand.

• Irregular periods that come every few months, not at all or too often.
• Excess hair on your face and other parts of your body. This is called “hirsutism”.
• Acne.
• Weight gain or trouble losing weight.
• Patches of dark, thickened skin on the back of your neck and/or armpits called “acanthosis nigricans”.

PCOS is caused by an imbalance in the hormones in your body. Some hormones like insulin are too high in your body. PCOS usually happens when LH levels or insulin levels are too high, which causes the ovaries to produce too much testosterone. Testosterone is a male hormone that causes acne and excess hair growth. The hormone imbalance causes many small painless cysts to form on your ovaries. These cysts are not cancerous but may cause increased menstrual flow or bleeding, skipped periods or abdominal pain.

Contact your child’s doctor if she has some or all of the signs listed above. While there is no cure for PCOS, there are several things that can be done to help ease the symptoms.

Your doctor may recommend lifestyle changes such as an individualized diet and exercise program. The doctor may also prescribe medications such as oral contraceptives and metformin.

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome Association
The Hormone Foundation
The Center for Young Women’s Health, Children’s Hospital Boston
Nemours Foundation

• PCOS: The Hidden Epidemic by Samuel Thatcher, MD, PhD, 494 pages
• Living with P.C.O.S.: Polycystic Ovary Syndrome by Angela Boss & Evelina Sterling, 156 pages
• PCOS: A Woman’s Guide to Dealing with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome. Written by Harris, Colette and Adam Carey

The Family Resource Center is located on the second floor at The Children’s Medical Center of Dayton and is open during the following hours (additional hours by appointment):
• Monday: 9:00 am to 8:00 pm
• Tuesday-Friday: 9:00 am to 4:00 pm
• Saturday: 9:00 am to 2:00 pm


Derechos de autor(c) de The Children's Medical Center, ano 1999. Este material unicamente tiene fines educativos. No puede ser reproducido, distribuido ni modificado sin previa autorizacion de The Children's Medical Center of Dayton, One Children's Plaza, Dayton, Ohio, 45404-1815. Llame al 937-641-3666 para solicitar autorizacion o para obtener un juego maestro para copias. Para obtener mas informacion puede visitar (consulte la seccion de informacion legal).

La informacion contenida en este material es unicamente informacion de tipo general. No debe considerarse como completa. Para obtener mas informacion acerca de los complementos para leche materna, por favor pidala a su doctor.
Corregido: 2006

The information contained in this handout is for general information only and should not be considered complete. For specific information about bathing your baby, please ask your doctor or nurse practitioner.

Additional information may be located in the Family Resource Center, 2nd floor, near the Outpatient Surgery Center. Hours of the center vary; please contact the Family Resource Center at 937-641-3700.

Copyright(c) The Children's Medical Center of Dayton. This material is for educational purposes only. It cannot be reproduced or distributed without permission from Dayton Children's.
Revised: 2006


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