I have PCOS


Opening up about illnesses or conditions that I had was never something I thought I would have
 to do. Mainly because I never struggled with any (apart from mental health issues). That was until 
recently. I wanted to talk about this because we as a society should learn to feel more comfortable 
when talking about taboo subjects and learn that we aren't facing them alone. 

Ever since I had my first period I've struggled with irregular cycles and heavy bleeding. I was put on a contraceptive pill which helped and worked. At the beginning of the year I decided that after being on it long enough, I wanted to come off it. This actually helped with a lot of things, except for my periods. After having an initial period I went over 12 weeks (3 months) without another one. The same thing happened again, this time I went over 14 weeks without one. After countless pregnancy tests and waiting around I thought enough was enough, and went to the doctors. 

I explained all my symptoms to the doctors including that since April 2017 I have slowly put on a significant amount of weight. He explained that due to my symptoms and family history it could be PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome), and sent me for some more tests. I was always aware that this could be an issue that I would have to face but never really thought that it would be true. 

This brings me to today. Results day. After having an ultrasound and other tests I was told that they found cysts on my ovaries along with a high level of testosterone (male hormone) and that I did in fact have PCOS. Along with this came the referral for more tests to see and talk about further treatments. This has led to me doing a lot of research to find out whats next for me. 

At this moment in time there isn't a lot that I can do. Thankfully it doesn't cause any pain and most 
of the time it doesn't affect me (mild discomfort every now and then due to irregular period cycle). However it can lower my chances of getting pregnant due to not ovulating often or at all. This can 
be treated with tablets, injections or IVF when the time comes to having children.

PCOS is when women carry an higher level of testosterone (male hormone) in their body
which causes an imbalance in their menstural cycle/period, making it harder for them to get
pregnant. This is also when the ovaries are inflamed, enlarged or surrounded by cysts.
In my case I have a higher level of testosterone, irregular periods and cysts on my ovaries. 

Although PCOS isn't painful and doesn't distract me from everyday life I wanted to talk about it
because although a lot of people have heard of it and it is a common thing, we don't realise how
common it is. In fact 1 in 5 women (according to the NHS) have PCOS in the UK yet half of these
women don't have any signs or symptoms. At the moment I am thankful for a diagnosis as I'm
able to understand the cause for my symptoms and work towards treatment and finding ways to
help me in the future. 

xoxo
Lea-Mai

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