What is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)is a condition in which a woman’s levels of the sex hormones estrogen and progesterone are out of balance. This leads to the growth of ovarian cysts (benign masses on the ovaries). PCOS can cause problems with a women’s menstrual cycle, fertility, cardiac function, and appearance.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, between 1 in 10 and 1 in 20 women of childbearing age suffers from PCOS. The condition currently affects up to 5 million women in the United States.
What are the symptoms of PCOS?
Symptoms of PCOS typically start soon after a woman begins to menstruate. The type and severity of symptoms varies from person to person. The most common characteristic of PCOS is irregular menstrual periods.
Because PCOS is marked by a decrease in female sex hormones, this condition may cause women to develop certain male characteristics, such as:
- excess hair on the face, chest, stomach, thumbs, or toes
- decrease in breast size
- deeper voice
- thin hair
Other symptoms include:
- weight gain
- pelvic pain
- anxiety or depression
While not symptoms of the disease, many women with PCOS have other concurrent health problems, such as diabetes, hypertension, and high cholesterol. These are linked to the weight gain typical in PCOS patients.
How does acupuncture treat PCOS?
Acupuncture treats PCOS by regulating the body’s hormonal balance, energy (Qi) flow, and improving blood circulation. Acupuncture theory also provides dietary recommendations and lifestyle changes that can help treat PCOS. Herbal medicine is also used in the treat of PCOS as an important adjunct to acupuncture. Acupuncture can also treat acne symptoms. I used to treat a female patient with PCOS who was 25 years old and suffered from amenorrhea and hairy body. After Two months acupuncture and herbal medical treatments, she got pregnant and gave a birth to a healthy boy after 39 weeks.