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1. What is PCOD?
PCOD or Polycystic Ovarian Disease is an endocrine disorder which affects 5% women. In this condition the ovaries produce excess amounts of male hormones or 'androgens' such as testosterone and lead to anovulatory menstrual cycles. PCOD commonly causes infertility, menstrual irregular regularities and excessive hair growth (hirsutism).
2. What are the tests to be performed to diagnose PCOD?
Tests for PCOD include pelvic ultrasound, blood investigations such as follicle stimulating hormone (FSH), and luteinizing hormone (LH) which determine if the cycles are ovulatory or not; testosterone levels which might be elevated, estrogen,and anti mullerian hormone. Other tests to rule out other conditions are thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH), cortisol, prolactin etc.
3. What are the signs of PCOD?
Signs of PCOD are weight gain, acne, male pattern baldness, heavy or very scanty bleeding, irregular periods, dark and velvety skin patches in skin folds like neck and groin, and excessive hair growth on back, abdomen, chest, and face.
4. Are PCOD & PCOS different?
Yes, PCOD and PCOS are different conditions. It is termed as PCOD when there is evidence of ovarian cysts on a sonography report. In cases where there are only symptoms and abnormal hormonal levels, it is termed as PCOS.
5. Is PCOD treatable?
There is no cure for PCOS yet, but one can control the symptoms such as weight gain, acne, high blood sugar with proper diet, exercise and medication. Even a weight loss of 5% can help women achieve regular ovulation cycles.