PCOS and its effects on skin and hair


Team Udayavani, Mar 25, 2021, 12:07 PM IST

Source: Unsplash

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) and Polycystic Ovarian Disease (PCOD) is a hormonal imbalance disorder. Women have multiple cysts in their ovaries, caused by an overproduction of hormones called androgens.

PCOS is a complex disorder and is one of the most common hormonal disturbances affecting women all over the world.

PCOS is recognized as a heterogeneous disorder that results in the overproduction of the male hormone, primarily from the ovary, and is associated with insulin resistance.

Impact of PCOS on skin and hair

Hirsutism or unwanted facial hair is a result of hyperandrogenism or excess male hormone secretion. It mostly affects the chin, sidelocks, chest, thighs, and even the nipple area.

Acne or pimples is persistent and it is important to know that PCOS is generally resistant to standard acne treatments. It mainly affects the lower one-third of the face and is associated with extremely tender eruptions suggesting more inflammation and shows premenstrual flare.

Acanthosis nigricans is a skin disorder characterized by darkening and thickening of the skin, occurring mainly in the folds of the skin in the armpit, groin, and back of the neck. As this condition is often treated like dirt, it is synonymous with insulin resistance and obesity.

Seborrhoeic dermatitis is often known as oily scalp and dandruff, when severe can affect the oily areas of the skin like around the nose, between eyebrows, and behind the ears.

Hair thinning in the crown and frontal area is often ignored until a major portion of the scalp becomes visible. Starting minoxidil as a preventive therapy and doing platelet-rich plasma sessions may be helpful.

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