Obesity and Polycystic Ovary Syndrome: Implications for Pathogenesis and Novel Management Strategies

    January 2019 in “ Clinical medicine insights
    Thomas M. Barber, Petra Hanson, Martin O. Weickert, Stephen Franks
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    TLDR Obesity worsens PCOS symptoms, and PCOS may lead to more weight gain; managing both requires a holistic approach that includes mental health.
    The document from 2019 reviews the relationship between obesity and Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), emphasizing the bidirectional nature of their impact on each other. It explains how obesity exacerbates PCOS through mechanisms like insulin resistance and hyperinsulinaemia, and how PCOS may contribute to further weight gain. The review also discusses the increased risk of obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) in women with PCOS and the effectiveness of treatments like CPAP therapy and bariatric surgery. A large study (n=178) is mentioned, showing a link between PCOS and increased 5-alpha reductase activity, and a meta-analysis of over 3,400 subjects indicates lower adiponectin levels in women with PCOS. Genetic factors, such as FTO gene variants, are implicated in PCOS development. The document suggests that emotional barriers can hinder physical activity in women with PCOS and that long-term weight management strategies, including mindfulness and moderate exercise, are important. It calls for a holistic approach to treatment, with sensitivity to mental and emotional health issues.
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