New Management Guidelines for PCOS
One in ten women experience Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)- It’s more common than I think most people realise.
It is a complex disease with often debilitating effects on a woman’s metabolic, psychological and reproductive functioning. Despite its high prevalence and cost on quality of life, it is considered a relatively neglected condition both in terms of scientific research and public discussion. With symptoms as varied and far reaching as irregular periods, difficulties with fertility, excess body hair, excess weight gain, progression toward type 2 diabetes, body image concerns, anxiety or depression, it is easy to see how the condition can be debilitating for women at all ages and stages.
The individual experience of PCOS is highly variable and has often led to difficulties in screening and diagnosis. Women with PCOS not only experience the range of symptoms differently, but these can change and re-prioritise as they move through the life cycle. The experiences of adolescence, early adulthood, planning a family and entering menopause can be difficult transitions to encounter for a woman with PCOS. Perhaps, it can feel as though just when you begin to understand your body and how it works best, change is always on the horizon.
The new clinical guidelines for the management of PCOS have recently been released. The document is the product of multidisciplinary collaboration and the synthesis of the ever-expanding base of evidence on the topic. It is pleasing to see the emphasis on mental and emotional wellbeing and the importance of a wholistic and individualised approach in managing the condition. It gives clinicians and women with PCOS some structure in planning their care to consider all of the options likely to optimise health and wellbeing.
So, for effective, balanced and wholistic care of PCOS – it takes a village….
It takes a village to offer medical expertise, psychological and emotional support, empathy and understanding. The condition is complex and at times highly debilitating – ideally, not something to be faced alone. A tribe of skilled health professionals and supportive friends and family will be the greatest asset in navigating a life with PCOS.
If you would like to find out more information on managing PCOS or the new clinical guidelines contact
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International evidence- based guideline for the assessment and management of polycystic ovary syndrome. Copyright Monash University, Melbourne Australia 2018. The guideline can be accessed online at: https://www.monash.edu/__data/assets/pdf_file/0004/1412644/PCOS-Evidence-Based-Guideline.pdf