Dr. Cobin shares how a doctor diagnosis a woman who suspects she has polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS).
There is no one test to diagnose polycystic ovary syndrome. The first thing we always tell people is that it is in part a diagnosis of exclusion. That means that knowledgeable doctors know how to make certain that a woman doesn’t have certain other disorders that can look something like polycystic ovary syndrome, in other words, present with irregular periods, excess hair growth, acne and so on.
Once those conditions are excluded, and there’s a rather short list of about ten items that a good endocrinologist can find, once those are excluded, then there is a constellation of clinical signs, symptoms, and some laboratory tests that are suggestive, but not diagnostic, and once you put all of that together, what we call the history, the physical examination, and the laboratory studies, this diagnosis becomes generally quite easily apparent.
About Dr. Cobin, M.D., M.A.C.E.:
Dr. Rhoda Cobin is Past-President of the American College of Endocrinology, a Past-President of the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE), and a Master of the American College of Endocrinology (ACE). Dr. Cobin has been in private practice in northern New Jersey for 31 years. She is a Clinical Professor of Medicine at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City and is Co-Chief of the Mount Sinai's Thyroid/Endocrinology Clinic.