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The Impact of PCOS on Fertility: What You Need to Know

For many on their parenthood path, Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) can feel like an incredibly daunting roadblock. But at First Fertility, we truly believe knowledge is power. Understanding this condition’s fundamentals equips you to tackle it head-on during your fertility journey, so we are here to share our knowledge on this subject with you today.

What is PCOS?

Let’s start with the basics – just what is PCOS? It’s one of the most common hormonal endocrine disorders among women of reproductive age. These are also known as endocrine disorders, which occur when the endocrine system doesn’t function properly. With PCOS, the ovaries produce higher-than-typical amounts of androgens, or male hormones like testosterone.

This hormone imbalance can manifest in several ways, from irregular periods to excess hair growth. But one of its most profound impacts is on ovulation and fertility. Many with PCOS struggle with infrequent or absent ovulation, making natural conception more difficult.

Accessed from: Mayo Clinic website

What Causes PCOS?

Although we know a combination of environmental and genetic factors contribute to PCOS, even medical specialists are not totally sure what the precise origin is. Insulin resistance, or an improper response of your body to the insulin hormone, is one frequently mentioned reason.

This can kickstart a hormonal domino effect leading to that telltale high androgen levels which tends to symbolize PCOS. Being overweight or obese also increases PCOS risk, experts believe, due to how weight can impact insulin resistance. 

Sourced from: Hayat Nutrition website

Is Getting Pregnant with PCOS High Risk?

So now the all important question – does PCOS make pregnancy riskier? In a word, yes, relatively speaking. While many with PCOS give birth to healthy babies, they do face some increased risk factors like:

  • Gestational diabetes
  • Pregnancy-induced high blood pressure
  • Preterm delivery
  • Miscarriage

These risks underscore why prioritizing your overall health is so vital when trying to conceive with PCOS. Managing weight, blood sugar, and hormone levels through lifestyle changes and/or medication goes a long way.

Can I Get Pregnant at 30 With PCOS?

If you find yourself asking “Can I get pregnant at 30 with PCOS?”, rest assured the answer is absolutely yes. Age 30 remains very fertile territory for most women. The main PCOS fertility challenge stems from those ovulation inconsistencies, not your age.

However, as with any condition impacting fertility, the sooner lifestyle remedies like diet and exercise are implemented, the better. Taking a proactive, holistic approach gives you the best possible chance of conception once you do start trying.

Can I Get Pregnant With PCOS Naturally?

Another common question we hear: “Can I get pregnant with PCOS naturally, without fertility treatments?” And again, the answer is yes, many are able to get pregnant naturally even with PCOS.

Keep in mind though, it often takes more time and effort for those with the condition to conceive naturally compared to those without it. Healthy habits that regulate your cycle give you the best shot. 

What Effect Does PCOS Have on Ovulation?

Since we know ovulation is so central to PCOS’ impact on fertility, let’s take a deeper look. Normally, the ovaries release an egg during each menstrual cycle via the complex hormonal dance of ovulation.

But with PCOS’ hormone imbalance, that ovulation process gets significantly disrupted. Some don’t ovulate at all, while others experience sporadic, unpredictable ovulation. This makes pinpointing that fertile window way trickier each cycle. 

Accessed from: News Medical Life Sciences website

Overcoming Obstacles With Comprehensive Care

Does this all sound intimidating? We know, infertility comes with many mental, emotional, and physical hurdles to confront. That’s exactly why at First Fertility, we take a fully holistic approach focused on your complete well-being.

Part of that centers around assembling a devoted fertility team of specialists to support you in overcoming PCOS roadblocks. You’ll work closely with our team of reproductive specialists and health professionals, who are invested in making your family dream a reality.

Our Customized Treatment Plans

While there’s no “cure” for PCOS, plenty of proven treatment paths exist to improve ovulation and increase fertility, tailored exactly to your needs. This multi-pronged plan may incorporate:

Medications: Regulating insulin levels through metformin or birth control to help restart regular ovulation

Lifestyle Changes: Certified nutritionists guide sustainable diet and exercise for weight management

Fertility Treatments: Options like IVF (In Vitro Fertilization), Intrauterine Insemination (IUI), or ICSI (Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection) may be recommended 

Prioritizing Your Mental Well-Being

Of course, our philosophy emphasizes caring for your mental and emotional health alongside the physical fertility factors. We understand the draining impact conditions like PCOS can have.

You’ll have a strong support system; we’re here to share invaluable coping strategies for reducing stress and fortifying resilience throughout this process. 

The Journey Towards Parenthood

There’s no way around it, the reality is that having PCOS can make your fertility journey considerably more challenging. But certainly not impossible. Overcoming roadblocks is simply part of the path.

With the right professional guidance and inner tenacity, you can still achieve your dream of becoming a parent, PCOS or not. Our entire First Fertility team takes immense pride in helping make that happen for our patients every single day.

So if you’re confronting PCOS’ impact on your fertility, do not hesitate to get in touch with our caring and professional specialists, who are ready to walk alongside you. We’ll equip you with all the tools and personalized care to navigate each turn in the road ahead. That first joyful step into parenthood awaits.

FAQs: The Impact of PCOS on Fertility

What is PCOS?

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a common hormonal disorder among women of reproductive age characterized by high levels of androgens, which can lead to irregular periods and fertility issues.

What Causes PCOS?

PCOS is caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors, with insulin resistance playing a significant role in its development.

Is Getting Pregnant with PCOS High Risk?

Yes, women with PCOS face higher risks of complications like gestational diabetes, high blood pressure, preterm delivery, and miscarriage during pregnancy.

Can I Get Pregnant at 30 With PCOS?

Absolutely, women with PCOS can still conceive at 30, though addressing ovulation irregularities early with lifestyle changes can improve chances.

Can I Get Pregnant With PCOS Naturally?

Yes, many women with PCOS can conceive naturally, though it may require more time and effort due to ovulation irregularities.

What Effect Does PCOS Have on Ovulation?

PCOS disrupts the normal ovulation process, leading to infrequent or absent ovulation, making it harder to pinpoint fertile windows.

How Can Comprehensive Care Help Overcome PCOS?

Comprehensive care involves a holistic approach with a team of specialists focusing on both physical and mental well-being to address PCOS-related fertility challenges.

  • Published on : Monday May 27, 2024
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About the author

Michelle Tan is an IVF Consultant with 12 years of experience in fertility consulting. Having personally undergone IVF and surrogacy, she brings firsthand insight and empathy to her work. Based in Singapore, Michelle frequently travels to clinics in Bangkok, Phnom Penh, and Bishkek, sharing her expertise and supporting patients on their fertility journeys.