Symptoms & Outcomes:
- Weight gain, trouble losing weight
- Unwanted hair growth (hirsutism) on face, arms, chest, feet
- Thinning hair (on head)
- Fatigue, mood changes (such as depression, irritability and anxiety)
- Pelvic pain (during menstrual cycle or otherwise)
Current Common Mainstream Treatments:
- Prescription Metformin – originally formulated to treat Type II Diabetes, metformin increases the body’s sensitivity to insulin, thereby decreasing the amount of insulin released by the liver
- Prescription birth control
Current Alternative Treatments & Diagnostic Testing:
- Naturally resetting the body’s insulin resistance
- Lifestyle changes such as diet and exercise
- Naturally reducing the body’s excess androgens
- Reducing low grade inflammation caused by infection or other factors
- Analyzing lab results to formulate a specialized plan to fix underlying issues
PCOS, or Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, is a condition not fully understood by the entire medical community yet. In part, this is because it straddles multiple medical disciplines: gynecology, endocrinology, adrenal specialties, and infertility. This doesn’t mean however, that it isn’t bringing great discomfort to up to 10% of women in their reproductive years in the meantime. This number is even higher in women that have early signs of PCOS, but don’t yet have cysts on their ovaries, but do have elevated testosterone function. In addition to the physical effects of this condition, it also takes a toll on many women emotionally, both due to physiological changes in their hormones, but also the vicious cycle of weight gain they struggle to lose, infertility, unwanted hair growth, unwanted hair loss, and pelvic pain to name a few.
Many women go years without a proper diagnosis. As we begin to look at this condition as a sum of all its parts, it becomes paramount to treat it first as a metabolic condition. In doing so, we can help many women become symptom free, or greatly symptom reduced. This is much easier when caught before the development of PCOS, if testing is recommended early on.
In terms of what we do differently at Alternative Family Medicine & Chiropractic it’s where we start: most times we will look at recent blood work, or may order new blood work, depending on the age of the last tests. We want to screen for causes of inflammation, such as: low grade infections, yeast overgrowth, gluten or food sensitivities/allergies, and/or blood sugar dysregulation. We next want to take a deeper look at the hormones. We know that PCOS is in part caused by the overproduction of male hormones (testosterone), but we want to cinch down even further to look at exactly how the different hormones are interacting with your metabolism. And to discern what is causing the androgens to be elevated in the first place. Researchers have found evidence linking the genetic condition known as insulin resistance (which about 90% of the population is affected by), to PCOS, and it is absolutely imperative in its treatment to reset this.
We want to help women feel better faster, and in a way that doesn’t create more health issues in the long run, like with giving hormone treatments and other medications. We treat the body as a whole and bring all the systems in line naturally. To find out more please give us a call to schedule an appointment.