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Six weeks ago I had a dilatation and curettage (D&C) after a miscarriage at 10 weeks. Now my doctor has discovered via ultrasound that my ovaries are polycystic. Is this common after miscarriage or D & C? Is this the same as PCOS? And will this effect future attempts to conceive?
If the ultrasound was done soon after your miscarriage, it may just be the ovaries trying to start back up. Blood work can usually nail down the diagnosis of polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), specifically, a measure of your glucose/insulin ratio, follicle stimulating hormone, luteinizing hormone, and serum testosterone. Your doctor may want to order these if a repeat ultrasound again demonstrates a multicystic picture. That you got pregnant already is a good sign against PCOS.
With PCOS, women suffer irregular—usually rare—periods, hair growth, and varying degrees of infertility. Its most general definition is a syndrome in which there is too much male-type hormone (androgen) produced by the ovaries (and sometimes the adrenal glands) with associated disruption of the normal cycle. Its exact cause is unknown, but it seems to be hereditary. Almost one in 20 women of reproductive age has it, and it is one of the most common causes of infertility. It is also one of the most underdiagnosed conditions in women. Now that other health consequences have been implicated in association with PCOS, a lot of attention has been given to making the diagnosis in women who otherwise would have been overlooked.
We hope these questions and answers have provided you with some insight, or links to other helpful information. For further reading, check out:
Physicians who contributed answers:
- Gerard M. DiLeo, a board certified obstetrician-gynecologist who has been in private practice since 1981 and has served as Chief of the Medical Staff at Lakeview Regional Medical Center in greater New Orleans. He has written a book called The Anxious Parents’ Guide to Pregnancy.
- Steven R. Goldstein, professor at New York University School of Medicine, and author of Could It Be…Perimenopause?: How Women 35-50 Can Overcome Forgetfulness, Mood Swings, Insomnia, Weight Gain, Sexual Dysfunction and Other Telltale Signs of Hormonal Imbalance.
- Marie O’Sullivan, registered nurse.
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