If you are a woman with polycystic ovary syndrome, you’ve probably wondered whether or not infertility is something you will face. 10%-15% of women are diagnosed with PCOS, and it can cause infertility by affecting hormones during ovulation. In fact, many women don’t even realize they have PCOS until they are trying to get pregnant. Since the cause of the infertility related to PCOS is simply a matter of the ovulation process, there are several methods of effective treatment you can take to increase your chances for ovulation.

The first method you should try is a lifestyle change. Losing weight through diet and exercise has been proven effective in restoring fertility to obese and overweight PCOS women. Weight loss of 5% to 10% can restore ovulatory cycles. If you are overweight and suffer from PCOS, exercise is a simple, cheap and effective method of treatment. It will also lessen other negative symptoms of PCOS, such as irregular menstruation and pelvic pain.

In the event that diet and exercise do not restore your fertility, the next step is insulin sensitizing drugs or aromatase inhibitors. Because PCOS inhibits ovulation by stunting the growth of ovarian follicles, the nature of this second line of treatment is meant to allow growth to occur by inhibiting the natural hormones released by the ovaries. If such drugs are unsuccessful, gonadotropin treatment can be used. Instead of inhibiting the ovaries, these hormones actually promote follicle growth, which can promote ovulation.

Finally, if hormonal treatment and exercise do not restore your fertility, in vitro fertilization should be considered. While complex and expensive, the process has been proven to be highly effective for women that suffer infertility caused by PCOS.

While polycystic ovary syndrome does have a lot of negative side effects for many women, infertility does not have to be one of them. With appropriate treatment, the ovulation process can be restored and infertility can be diminished. Diet and exercise are the easiest way to regain fertility if you suffer from PCOS, and it will obviously lead to other positive changes in your health. Hormonal treatments are another successful, fairly easy way to become fertile if you suffer from PCOS. Finally, in vitro fertilization is an expensive but highly successful option. So, if you have been diagnosed with PCOS, hope is not lost. You have many options for becoming fertile when you start trying to have a baby.

Source: Tomic Vlatka, Tomic Jozo: Infertility Treatment in Patients with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS). J Fertiliz In Vitro 2, volume 113, March 2012