Excess body hair can be a warning sign of a common fertility problem

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a hormone imbalance that occurs when women’s ovaries produce excessive amounts of androgen. Although there are several types of androgens, testosterone is the most commonly known. In its most basic form, androgen is an anabolic steroid. The overproduction of androgen results in the development of small harmless cysts in women’s ovaries. With PCOS, women may experience fertility problems because the ovary doesn’t make the hormones it needs for the eggs to mature, and as a result, some follicles may remain cysts. Other symptoms of PCOS that vary across women can include excessive hair growth (called hirsutism), baldness, irregular menstruation, weight gain, and acne.

Androgen excess is the most common endocrine disorder in women of reproductive age, with PCOS affecting at least 1 in 10 women of childbearing age. If you think you may have PCOS, contact your medical doctor. A medical history, physical exam, pelvic exam, blood tests and/or vaginal ultrasound may be done to diagnose this disorder. Treatments include lifestyle changes (including weight loss), medication (e.g., birth control pills, diabetes medications, fertility medications), or pelvic laparoscopic surgery. With treatment, many women with PCOS are able to become pregnant.

Read more about PCOS here.

Tags:, ,

One Response to “Excess body hair can be a warning sign of a common fertility problem”

  1. April says:

    This happened to me. I kept noticing that I had a ton of facial hair and I was always having to have it removed. One of the estheticians at my hair salon said that she had heard that increased facial hair might be a sign of a fertility problem. I kind of laughed and didn’t believe her, but when was at my yearly exam asked my doc and went through some testing and she was right! I have PCOS. My doc is trying a few different meds to help me manage the symptoms. I’m not sure if I want kids in the future, but I hope that with treatment, I’ll be able to do so, if it turns out I do. Thanks for posting on this!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *