LONDON: Are you experiencing anxiety, depression and panic attacks? Beware, as your PCOS problem may be affecting your health. New research has warned that women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) are more likely to suffer from mental health problems.
PCOS is a chronic disease in which elevated male hormone levels can cause a range of distressing and life-limiting symptoms, including reduced fertility, irregular periods, excessive facial and body hair and acne.
The research also added that the high levels of testosterone during pregnancy have been reported to increase the risk of neurodevelopmental disorders, such as ADHD and autism, in children.
"The effect of PCOS on mental health is under-appreciated. Our work shows that screening for mental health disorders should be considered during clinical assessments," said Aled Rees, Professor at Britain's Cardiff University.
The researchers assessed over 17,000 women diagnosed with PCOS and followed them for a period of six months regularly. When compared with unaffected women, matched for age, body mass index and geographical location, the study found that PCOS patients were more likely to be diagnosed with mental health disorders, including depression, anxiety and bipolar disorder.
The results, presented at the Society for Endocrinology Annual Conference 2017 in Bristol, noted that the children born to mothers with PCOS were also found to be at greater risk of developing ADHD and autism spectrum disorder.
These findings suggest that women with PCOS should be screened for mental health disorders, to ensure early diagnosis and treatment and ultimately improve their quality of life.