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PCOS

Heather A Dixon, D.O. -  - Obstetrics & Gynecology

Heather A Dixon, D.O.

Obstetrics & Gynecology located in Corpus Christi, TX

If you gain weight easily, grow excess hair on your face or body, or have irregular or infrequent menstrual periods, you might be among the 2.2-26.7% of women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). PCOS is underdiagnosed, but Heather Dixon, DO, and the skilled team of OB/GYNs at Corpus Christi Women’s Clinic can help you find out if you have the condition and provide effective treatment for your symptoms. To learn more about PCOS, call the office in Corpus Christi, Texas, or book your appointment online today.

PCOS Q & A

What is PCOS?

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a hormone disorder affecting women in their reproductive prime. If you have the condition, your ovaries develop tiny fluid sacs called follicles because of an overproduction of male hormones called androgens. Because of the condition, your ovaries can’t release eggs regularly. This prevents you from getting pregnant. 

The three main features of PCOS are ovarian cysts, irregular menstrual periods, and high levels of androgens in your system. Dr. Dixon diagnoses you with the condition if she finds that you have at least two of the three symptoms. She may perform a pelvic exam, blood tests, and ultrasound imaging to identify these features. 

What are the symptoms of PCOS?

PCOS can cause a number of varying signs and symptoms. You should book an appointment at Corpus Christi Women’s Clinic if you have the following symptoms or mention them during your annual exam:

  • Irregular periods
  • Heavy menstrual bleeding
  • Excess hair growth on your face and body
  • Acne
  • Unexplained weight gain
  • Dark patches on your skin
  • Headaches
  • Thinning hair or baldness

These symptoms come from excessive androgens in your system. You might notice them shortly after you get your first period, or you might have few enough symptoms not to notice the condition at all. 

What are the potential complications of PCOS?

In addition to the bothersome symptoms of PCOS, the condition can lead to a variety of complications if you don’t receive effective treatment. Common complications of PCOS include:

  • Infertility
  • Baldness
  • Diabetes
  • Pregnancy complications (miscarriage or premature birth)
  • Metabolic syndrome 
  • Sleep apnea
  • Abnormal uterine bleeding

Obesity is also associated with PCOS and can worsen other complications and symptoms. 

How is PCOS treated?

At Corpus Christi Women’s Clinic, Dr. Dixon helps you explore available treatments to ease your symptoms, regulate your menstrual cycle, and improve your fertility if you want to become pregnant. Your PCOS treatment might include:

Birth control

Hormonal birth control can help restore balance among the hormones in your body. Dr. Dixon might recommend the pill, the skin patch, or a vaginal ring. 

Metformin

Metformin is a medication that improves your body’s insulin levels. Taking it can regulate your metabolism to help you lose weight and restore your normal menstrual cycle. 

Fertility treatments

If you have PCOS and want to get pregnant, Dr. Dixon might recommend fertility treatments like medications or surgery.

If you have irregular periods or other symptoms of PCOS, call Corpus Christi Women’s Clinic for an evaluation or book your appointment online today.