Polycystic ovary syndrome, or PCOS, is one of the most common causes of female infertility. PCOS is a hormonal disorder that makes it much more difficult for women to conceive naturally. At our Lubbock, TX fertility clinic, The Centre for Reproductive Medicine, we offer several fertility treatments that make it easier for women with PCOS to get pregnant.
Although fertility treatments can be highly successful for PCOS sufferers, many women wonder if you can get pregnant naturally with PCOS. Here, Dr. Janelle Dorsett discusses how PCOS affects fertility, and the likelihood of getting pregnant without fertility treatment.
How PCOS Affects Fertility
PCOS is a hormonal imbalance that compromises egg growth/maturity and interferes with egg release. Ultimately, these effects impact ovulation. Women with PCOS are likely to have irregular periods. Many women with PCOS go several months without having a period, and some have only a couple of periods a year. A woman cannot get pregnant if she is not ovulating. So while a woman with PCOS can get pregnant naturally, it is far more difficult since ovulation is irregular and unpredictable. Additionally, egg quality can be affected by PCOS, so even if a woman ovulates, she may still have a hard time conceiving.
Addressing PCOS with Lifestyle Changes
If women with PCOS want to get pregnant without any type of fertility medication or treatment, there are options for them to try. Some PCOS patients have found success by making lifestyle changes that promote a healthy reproductive system. Lifestyle changes that may have a positive effect on PCOS symptoms include:
- Eating a nutrient-rich diet
- Choosing anti-inflammatory foods
- Adopting a regular exercise routine
- Losing weight
- Managing stress
It is important to realize that a woman’s ovarian reserve naturally depletes as she gets older. So while we encourage women to consider practices that may make it easier to become pregnant while suffering from PCOS, our patient’s age and reproductive health always need to be considered. If a woman is unable to conceive naturally for a prolonged period of time, it is probably best to consider how fertility services can help.
PCOS and Fertility Medication
If our Lubbock patients are unable to conceive naturally due to PCOS complications, they may be good candidates for fertility medication. Fertility medication stimulates the ovaries and encourages the production and release of multiple mature eggs. By regulating ovulation, we can significantly increase a woman’s chance of becoming pregnant, while still allowing her the opportunity to conceive naturally. Many of our PCOS patients find success with this treatment technique.
PCOS and Fertility Treatment
Although it is possible for women with PCOS to conceive naturally, it does not always happen. If lifestyle changes and fertility medication are unsuccessful in allowing a woman to conceive naturally, there are other fertility treatments to consider. In vitro fertilization, or IVF, is a good option for our Lubbock patients with PCOS. Dr. Dorsett is happy to recommend an appropriate treatment plan based on each patient’s unique needs and desires.
Schedule a Consultation
If you suffer from PCOS and are ready to start a family, Dr. Janelle Dorsett would be happy to let you know how the fertility services offered at The Centre for Reproductive Medicine can help. Call (806) 788-1212 or contact us online to schedule a consultation with Dr. Dorsett.