PCOS (PolyCystic Ovary Syndrome) is a common cause of difficulties to get pregnant. It is also known as Stein-Leventhal syndrome or hyperandrogenic chronic anovulation. The exact cause of PCOS is unknown, but PCOS develops due
to a type of hormonal or complex metabolic disorders and is mostly associated with insulin resistance.
Eventually leading to the development of PCOS symptoms: the ovaries produce too many androgenic hormones that affect ovulation. Thus, the follicle per cycle does not function properly. In the ovary, cysts are forming, oocytes do
not reach full maturation, and because of thickened ovary wall, egg cells can’t get out of the follicles, so no real ovulation can occur. All this results in bleeding disorders, lack of ovulation and ultimately infertility.
Women who have close relatives with PCOS are more likely to be affected1.
1Franks, S.; Gharani, N.; Waterworth, D.; Batty, S.; White, D.; Williamson, R.; McCarthy, M. (1997): The genetic basis of polycystic ovary syndrome. In Hum Reprod 12 (12), pp. 2641–2648. DOI: 10.1093/humrep/12.12.2641.
Unfortunately, PCOS syndrome can’t be simply cured today, but with appropriate preparations, symptoms can be eliminated and reduced. The purpose of the treatment is to treat insulin resistance, to compensate for the effects of male hormones, and to promote ovulation, follicular rupture, thereby promoting fertility.
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of women had normal ovulation taking RICHTER CycleBalance®. These women with PCOS had a significantly better chance to concieve1.
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times higher pregnancy rate using CycleBalance® by women suffering from PCOS during IVF treatment2.
What is more, women with PCOS who become pregnant are at an increased risk of developing diabetes which RICHTER CycleBalance® can help to prevent.
1 Papaleo, Enrico; Unfer, Vittorio; Baillargeon, Jean-Patrice; Santis, Lucia de; Fusi, Francesco; Brigante, Claudio et al. (2007): Myo-inositol in patients with polycystic ovary syndrome. A novel method for ovulation induction.
In Gynecological endocrinology : the official journal of the International Society of Gynecological Endocrinology 23 (12), pp. 700–703. DOI: 10.1080/09513590701672405.
2 Artini, Paolo; Di M Berardino, O.; Papini, F.; Genazzani, Alessandro; Simi, G.; Ruggiero, M.; Cela, Vito (2013): Endocrine and clinical effects of Myo-Inositol administration in polycystic ovary syndrome. A randomized study. In Gynecological endocrinology : the official journal of the International Society of Gynecological Endocrinology 29. DOI: 10.3109/09513590.2012.743020.
Possible symptoms of PCOS:
There is no one specific test that can diagnose PCOS. Questions about your periods, weight changes, hair and skin changes, your family’s medical history, sometimes a complete physical exam, lab tests can help your doctor to make a diagnosis of PCOS and exclude other causes for your symptoms. Symptoms are complex, to determine the exact diagnosis blood collection, hormone test and gynecological ultrasound are needed.
The PCOS examination is based on so called “Rotterdam” criteria.1 Diagnosis can be established if 2 or more symptoms are present in the following three:
1. irregular or infrequent or no periods – indicates your ovaries does not ovulate regularly
2. clinical and/or laboratory blood tests – measure your hormone levels, signs of overweight androgenic (male hormone, e.g. testosterone) and to screen for diabetes or a high cholesterol level may be performed
3. ultrasonically verified PCOS - ultrasound scan can investigate whether you have a high number of cysts in your ovaries (polycystic ovaries). These are under-developed sacs called follicles, in which eggs develop.
1Revised 2003 consensus on diagnostic criteria and long‐term health risks related to polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) (2004). In Hum Reprod 19 (1), pp. 41–47.
Available online at https://academic.oup.com/humrep/article-pdf/19/1/41/2026052/deh098.pdf.
Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas. It is considered to be the main anabolic hormone of the body.
It regulates the metabolism of carbohydrates, fats and protein by promoting the absorption of, especially, glucose (sugar) from the blood into liver, fat and skeletal muscle cells. It works particularly on the liver and muscle cells, causing them to absorb more glucose from blood where it is either broken down to produce energy or converted to long term energy stores.
Insulin resistance is present in about 65-% 1of the PCOS patients. Insulin resistance means the body does not respond as quickly as it is normal to insulin. The sluggish response will cause larger and larger amounts of insulin to be required before glucose is taken into the body tissues, and eventually a change in the way the body deals with sugar. Consistently high levels of glucose in the blood can lead to diabetes. Insulin is an appetite stimulant, which is perhaps why many women with PCOS report frequent cravings for sweets and other carb rich foods. Elevated insulin level is also believed to be a contributing factor to inflammation and other metabolic complications associated with PCOS.
Women with PCOS who have too much insulin may also produce too much testosterone. The raised levels of insulin and testosterone may also prevent the normal development of follicles in the ovaries, with many not developing fully. This causes problems with ovulation, so many women have period problems and reduced fertility and symptoms such as excess hair growth and head hair loss.56%
improved insulin sensitivity using RICHTER CycleBalance® in women with PCOS.2Get RICHTER CycleBalance®!
1 DeUgarte, Catherine Marin; Bartolucci, Alfred A.; Azziz, Ricardo (2005): Prevalence of insulin resistance in the polycystic ovary syndrome using the homeostasis model assessment. In Fertility and Sterility 83 (5), pp. 1454–1460. DOI: 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2004.11.070.
2Artini, Paolo; Di M Berardino, O.; Papini, F.; Genazzani, Alessandro; Simi, G.; Ruggiero, M.; Cela, Vito (2013): Endocrine and clinical effects of Myo-Inositol administration in polycystic ovary syndrome. A randomized study. In Gynecological endocrinology : the official journal of the International Society of Gynecological Endocrinology 29. DOI: 10.3109/09513590.2012.743020.
Over time there is an increased risk of developing type-2 diabetes, diabetes in pregnancy (gestational diabetes), a high cholesterol level and, possibly, high blood pressure. PCOS identified
as a risk factor associated with type 2 diabetes1.
These problems may also raise your risk of pregnancy complications or having tumorous diseases and cardiovascular problems later in
If you recognize any of these symptoms, please visit your doctor or your gynecologist!
1Gambineri, Alessandra; Patton, Laura; Altieri, Paola; Pagotto, Uberto; Pizzi, Carmine; Manzoli, Lamberto; Pasquali,
Renato (2012): Polycystic Ovary Syndrome Is a Risk Factor for Type 2 Diabetes. Results From a Long-Term Prospective Study. In Diabetes 61 (9), pp. 2369–2374. DOI: 10.2337/db11-1360.