PCOS Is a Risk Factor for Prediabetes and Diabetes
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is caused when follicles in a woman’s ovaries bunch together and form cysts. This interrupts the menstrual cycle, triggering unexpected hormonal changes. Symptoms of PCOS include acne, weight gain, irregular or painful periods, depression, extra facial and body hair and fertility problems. PCOS increases risk of heart disease, cancer and diabetes.
PCOS is very common. It’s estimated that 5%-10% of women in the U.S. have the disease. The connection between PCOS and type 2 diabetes (including the early stage, prediabetes) is unknown.It’s estimated that 5%-10% of women in the U.S. have PCOS
What should you know about PCOS, prediabetes and diabetes?
- Women with PCOS should have their blood glucose tested for diabetes by age 30, experts say.
- Women with other risk factors for diabetes or prediabetes may need to be tested more often.
- Evidence shows that high levels of insulin may worsen symptoms of PCOS.
To treat PCOS, a doctor may prescribe medication to restore hormone balance, including birth control pills, androgen-lowering medication or metformin. Regular exercise, good nutrition and weight loss can also help.