Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder that affects many women of reproductive age. One of the symptoms of PCOS is weight gain, and many women with PCOS also struggle with obesity. The relationship between PCOS and obesity is complex and poorly understood, but several factors may contribute to this association.
One possible explanation for the link between PCOS and obesity is insulin resistance. Women with PCOS often have insulin resistance, meaning their bodies have more difficulty using insulin to regulate blood sugar levels. This can lead to weight gain and difficulty losing weight, as insulin resistance can make it harder for the body to burn fat.
If you are struggling with obesity and PCOS, working with your healthcare provider to develop a treatment plan that addresses both conditions is essential. This may include lifestyle changes such as dietary modifications, exercise, and medication to help manage insulin resistance and hormonal imbalances.
In a clinical study, researchers compared two treatments for women with both conditions to see which was more effective. The study included 90 women between 18 and 40 years old with a body mass index (BMI) of 27.5 or higher and a waist circumference of 85 cm or higher. All of the women also had PCOS. They were split into two groups: one group was given medication (metformin and an oral contraceptive) for the first six months and then just metformin for the second 6 months, while the other group had surgery (laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy).
The researchers followed the women for 12 months to determine whether their PCOS symptoms had improved. Specifically, they looked at whether the women had six regular menstrual cycles in a row or had become pregnant spontaneously. They found that in 78% of the women who had surgery, PCOS went into remission, while only 15% of those who had medication did.
The women who had surgery also lost more weight than those who had medication. The average BMI at the end of the study was 23.7 for the women who had surgery and 30.1 for the women who had medication. The researchers also looked at other factors that might affect PCOS symptoms, such as insulin resistance and androgen levels, but they found no significant differences between the two groups.
In conclusion, weight loss has been shown to affect PCOS symptoms positively, but the final BMI after weight loss is critical for achieving complete remission. The study suggests that bariatric surgery may be more effective than medication for treating PCOS in women with obesity. It is essential for healthcare providers to evaluate and individualize treatment plans for women with PCOS and obesity, taking into consideration their BMI and overall health status, to provide the best possible outcome and improve their quality of life.
National Library of Medicine, Jul-14-22