What is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome?

What is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome?

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is an endocrine disorder characterised by ovulatory dysfunction, metabolic changes (e.g., obesity and insulin resistance) and hyperandrogenism (e.g., hirsutism and acne) (1).

Around 40-60% of people with PCOS live with obesity, which itself is a risk factor for metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease risk (2).

A common metabolic symptom of PCOS is insulin resistance (IR), which was initially thought to be a complication secondary to obesity. However, it is understood that 44-70% of people with PCOS have IR independent of their body mass index (BMI) (3). PCOS has a prevalence of 8-13% amongst people of reproductive age (1). This article will focus on PCOS in adults over 18 years old.

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