one in ten
by Maren Nelson
by Maren Nelson
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) effects one in ten women. According to the Mayo Clinic, “Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder common among women of reproductive age. Women with PCOS may have infrequent or prolonged menstrual periods or excess male hormone (androgen) levels. The ovaries may develop numerous small collections of fluid (follicles) and fail to regularly release eggs. The exact cause of PCOS is unknown. Early diagnosis and treatment along with weight loss may reduce the risk of long-term complications such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease.” One in ten women have this disorder, but “The exact cause of PCOS isn't known.” In fact, women with a variety of symptoms (often not the same) are diagnosed with PCOS, and many may suffer from compounding disorders of the thyroid or diabetes.
Knowing that PCOS can impact longterm health, fertility, and a variety of aspects of life including mental health, we wonder whether or not something like this would be allowed to persist without concrete answers if it affected 10% of men. We question whether or not healthcare researchers and professionals have chosen to minimize symptoms expressed by women including fatigue, mental fogginess, and memory issues. We are frustrated that 10% of women can experience dramatically different symptoms and yet all are treated with the same limited treatments and told to simply lose weight. We are enraged by the lack of compassion, understanding, and drive to understand this painful disorder. One in ten. That’s simply unacceptable.