PCOS_to_Wellness_content

PCOS is a surprisingly common condition believed to affect approx 10% of reproductive-aged women, with up to 70% of affected women remaining undiagnosed. This comprehensive panel checks for hormonal imbalance, thyroid dysfunction and insulin resistance which can provide further insights into women who may be suffering from PCOS.

What we test

Insulin

Insulin resistance is a common feature of women with PCOS. High levels of insulin can lead to increased testosterone production, as well as metabolic issues such as weight gain, increased risk of diabetes and cardiovascular risk.

This blood test measures:

A hormone produced by the pancreas that helps to control blood glucose levels and plays a role in controlling the levels of carbohydrates and fats stored in the body.

Female Hormone Panel

Hormone imbalances are often evident with PCOS, and may be associated with irregular menstrual cycles, infertility, lack of ovulation, and hyperandrogenism (resulting from high levels of testosterone).

This PCOS female hormone test measures:

High levels commonly seen in polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) which can lead to difficulties in conceiving. Symptoms can include irregular periods, loss of hair from the head, excess facial and body hair, unexplained weight gain and acne.

Most testosterone is strongly bound to sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG). This test measures the proportion of unbound testosterone which is available to the body's tissues.

Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SHBG) is a protein that binds tightly to testosterone and oestradiol. Changes in SHBG levels can affect the amount of hormone that is available to be used by the body's tissues.

Too much oestradiol (oestrogen) is linked to acne, constipation, loss of sex drive, depression, weight gain, PMS, period pain, and thyroid dysfunction. The effects of low oestradiol are evident in menopause and include mood swings, vaginal dryness, hot flashes, night sweats and osteoporosis.

The sex hormone produced mainly in the ovaries following ovulation and is a crucial part of the menstrual cycle. Progesterone helps to combat PMS and period pain issues, assists fertility and promotes calmness and quality of sleep.

Governs the menstrual cycle, peaking before ovulation. Raised LH can signal that you are not ovulating, are menopausal or that your hormones are not in balance (as with polycystic ovaries).

Stimulates the ovary to mature an egg. High levels indicate poor ovarian reserves which means the quality and quantity of eggs may be low. This doesn’t necessarily mean that pregnancy is impossible, but it may be more difficult to achieve.

Normally this ratio is about 1:1 meaning FSH and LH levels in the blood are similar. In women with polycystic ovaries the LH to FSH ratio is often higher e.g. 2:1 or even 3:1

Test instructions

Your finger prick test kit and all instructions are posted directly to you, and there is no need to visit a collection centre.

Take test 7 days before predicted date of menstruation (if known). If menstrual cycle is 28 days, test on day 21 (where day 1 is the first day of bleeding).

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