Friday, August 27, 2004

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome

I had an ultrasound yesterday (Thurs 8/26/04) – both abdominal and transvaginal. As I lay there watching my ovaries and uterus on the screen – I could see them with help from the tech measuring things – I noticed that there were numerous black spots on each of my ovaries. At first I thought – hey maybe the Clomid is working, but FOUR on EACH ovary?? That seemed pretty unlikely. As I made my way back to my office I was wondering whether this was normal. I looked some things up on the internet and found some ultrasound pictures that looked similar to mine.. and below the picture – Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)!!

I have heard about PCOS before and have done a lot of reading about it. I had suspected before that I had it based on my symptoms, but never had anything to confirm so I didn’t think much about it. My doc called later in the day and said that I have numerous 3 to 5 mm cysts on each of my ovaries and that she suspects that I have PCOS. She's ordering blood work to confirm this. I'll have to go in on CD3 of my next cycle. They will check for Androgens and Insulin Resistance. She also says that it looks like 50mg of Clomid isn't getting the job done -- though it's still possible that one or two of the 5mm cysts could mature. So now I continue as normal I guess.. she said to still take the OPKs and do the baby olympics just in case, but she suspects that I'll bleed between days 28 and 38. If I haven't bled by day 38 I'm supposed to call her for another prescription for Provera and my next round of Clomid (100mg)

If I am diagnosed with PCOS it doesn’t really change anything. We already knew I wasn’t ovulating now we just know why. The treatment is the same. First you start with Clomid – if that doesn’t work (and you have insulin resistance) then you take metroformin and Clomid together, if that doesn’t work there are injections that are heavily monitored to prevent over-stimulation, if that doesn’t work then you go on to IVF.

Well, at least my craziness got me booked for a flight to Taipei!! And now I'm not feeling as OBSESSED with the whole thing. This could take a while and I should just keep living my life!!! I think I'm going to start running again!!!! I almost feel like I got a little bit of my life back!

I’m not concerned about getting pregnant – I’m pretty sure that this can happen (eventually), but I am looking into natural remedies and things I can do nutritionally to provide maintenance long term to keep my hormones in check. If I have insulin resistance problems things would be worse for me… just for my general health. Type II diabetes is pretty prevalent in women with PCOS… but most of those women are also obese so hopefully my risk for this is low!

If you want to learn a bit more about this here is a decent link that is short!

This is a great site that has pics of Polycystic ovaries and an ultrasound picture that looks very similar to mine.

And if you go here you can see what an ovary looks like after Clomid - with maturing follicles:

What causes PCOS?PCOS develops when the ovaries overproduce androgens (eg, testosterone). Androgen overproduction often results from overproduction of LH (luteinizing hormone), which is produced by the pituitary gland. Research also suggests that when insulin levels in the blood are high enough, the ovary can be stimulated to produce more testosterone. That is, the combination of having ovaries which are responsive to insulin and high insulin levels in the blood, can result in the overproduction of testosterone.

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