Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) (cont.)
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The exact cause of polycystic ovarian syndrome is not clear, although a number of abnormalities have been documented in women with PCOS. There is some evidence for an inherited (genetic) cause for PCOS, although no specific genetic mutation has been identified as the cause. It has been shown that the ovaries of women with PCOS may produce excessive amounts of male hormones, or androgens, which lead to disruptions in the menstrual cycle and impaired fertility.
PCOS is also associated with insulin resistance, or an impaired ability to utilize insulin, and this abnormality is also likely related to the cause of PCOS.
The presence of small cysts in the ovaries is not specific for PCOS, since women who do not have PCOS may have ovarian cysts. Therefore the presence of cysts is not likely to be the cause of the symptoms of PCOS.
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