Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is well-treated using naturopathic medicine.
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a common endocrine system disorder among women of reproductive age. Women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) may have enlarged ovaries that contain small collections of fluid, called follicles in their ovaries.
The cause of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is not known, but early diagnosis and treatment along with weight loss may reduce the risk of long-term complications, such as type-2 diabetes and heart disease.
Seek professional healthcare if you experience menstrual irregularities, infertility or signs of androgen (male hormone) excess such as acne and male-pattern hair growth.
Symptoms of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)
Possible symptoms of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) include at least two of the following:
- Menstrual irregularities
- Androgen excess (e.g., excess facial and body hair, adult acne or severe adolescent acne, male-pattern baldness)
- Polycystic ovaries (enlarged ovaries that contain numerous small fluid-filled sacs which surround your eggs)
Treatment of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) at Toronto Centre for Naturopathic Medicine
At Toronto Centre for Naturopathic Medicine, the goals of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) treatment are weight management (if necessary), to normalize hormone balance, to restore ovulation and manage any associated health conditions (e.g., diabetes mellitus).
Conventional treatment for polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) may include a variety of medications, including the birth control pill, clomiphene, gonadotropins, letrozole, spironolactone and metformin. These treatments may have short- or long-term side effects.
For this reason, you may choose to try natural treatment to possibly avoid use of conventional medications, or together with conventional medications in order to decrease dosages of conventional medications required to manage your polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) symptoms.
Naturopathic treatment of any chronic health concern must be recognized as a process that involves:
- Identifying specific treatment goals
- Development by your naturopathic doctor, of a thorough understanding of all factors affecting your health, including physical, psychological, emotional and lifestyle factors
- Development of a comprehensive treatment plan
- Implementation and maintenance of that plan through periodic monitoring and adjustment.
At Toronto Centre for Naturopathic Medicine, a typical approach to treating polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) may be to:
- Identify and address underlying factors in your general health (e.g., obesity) that may be contributing to your polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) symptoms
- Correct hormonal imbalances and normalize ovulation using metabolic detoxification protocols and botanical (herbal) medicines
- Decrease size of ovarian fluid sacs using acupuncture or botanical (herbal) medicines
Where appropriate, a number of therapeutic options are available, to be used alone, or more often in a complementary fashion, including:
- Nutritional counseling
- Nutritional supplements
- Metabolic detoxification protocols
- Botanical (herbal) medicines
- Bowen Therapy
- Exercise prescription
- Relaxation (meditation) training
- Lifestyle medicine and counseling
Treatments provided by naturopathic doctors are covered by most extended healthcare plans.
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) [Internet]. Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; [cited 2015 Mar 31]. Available from: http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/pcos/basics/definition/con-20028841.