Theresearch investigates the vulnerability of women with PCOS to mental healthissues.
Practitioners have been only focusing on the physical and biologicalsymptoms of the patients, very less importance is given to psychologicalsymptoms. This research has tried to highlight the susceptibility of thepatients to mental health issues to promote over all treatment for them. Psychologicalvulnerability has been assessed by examining anxiety, depression, stress andoverall quality of life of the individual.
POLYCYSTICOVARIAN SYNDROME Polycysticovarian syndrome (PCOS), also known by the name Stein-Leventhal syndrome, is ahormonal problem that causes women to have a variety of symptoms. PCOS ischaracterized by a spectrum of symptoms, including irregular or no menstrualperiods, excess hair growth on the face and body (hirsutism), weight gain,acne, ovarian cysts, and thinning of the hair on the scalp. The short andlong-term health problems associated with PCOS are significant, and includeobesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obstructive sleepapnea, complications during pregnancy, impaired fertility, andincreased risk of endometrial cancer. THEORIESBEHIND ITS ETIOLOGY Endocrinesystem defectDue toendocrine system defect, hypothalamus and/or pituitary gland gets affectedwhich results in increase in production of either gonadotropin-releasinghormone (GnRH) or luteinizing hormone (LH). The ovaries due to this increasebecome overstimulated and result in androgen excess, which disrupts the normalmenstrual cycle. This is ovarian androgen excess. Androgen excess can also bedue to adrenal involvement. The adrenal androgen DHEA-S, is mainly stimulatedby cortisol.
Women with PCOS have been shown to release more cortisol than thegeneral population, hence in order to regulate the levels of cortisol ACTH isreleased. This ACTH is the culprit which leads to increase in DHEA-S levels. Hencein both cases, excess of androgen has been linked to PCOS. Lack of iodine levelThis theory focuses on low level of iodineleading to formation of scar tissue. Due to this the cysts could be formed,resulting in the other symptoms of PCOS.
Its not just the thyroid that requiresiodine, ovaries require it as well. Ovaries contain the second highest concentrationof iodine in a women’s body after thyroid. This low level of iodine can resultin deficiency of FSH, thus preventing the follicules to mature into an egg. Thesefollicules then form the cysts. Xenobioticsand toxic substancesIn this modern world, food have taken adifferent path. With the advancement of technology, food have started beinggenetically modified. Even the environmental pollutants, chemicals found infood can disrupt the function of hormones and alter the development of foetaltissue. Embryo is extremely sensitive to these substances even though it mightnot cause much harm to the mother.
It can damage the ovarian follicles which isusually becomes apparent when the child reaches puberty. InsulinresistanceThe insulin levels becomehigh when the body is not able to use the insulin present to help cells use theglucose. This is due to the body being resistant to insulin. Thus, the insulin isnot able to do its job effectively, hence the body produces more insulin tocompensate this.
Due to this insulinlevel increases, it further stimulates ovaries to make more androgen thusresulting in disruption of menstrual cycle.