Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
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Polycystic ovarian syndrome or PCOS occurs when there is an imbalance of female sex hormones. Watch this video to learn more about PCOS.
Transcript: Polycystic ovarian syndrome or PCOS is really interesting because it's a clinical diagnosis meaning...
Polycystic ovarian syndrome or PCOS is really interesting because it's a clinical diagnosis meaning that you have to really look at what the patient's going through. It's not something that always shows up on a blood test and actually-there's some controversy-but not every woman who has PCOS actually has cysts on their ovaries. I mean, there are some classic, clinical features on ultrasound but not every woman who has the symptoms has those features. So some of the things I ask about are number one: irregular periods. Number two: something called hirsutism which is basically unwanted hair growth. Some women experience hair thinning, alopecia. And another thing is they have insulin resistance meaning that the insulin that's produced from the pancreas to regulate blood sugar may not be as effective at the cellular level. And these patients can be predisposed to diabetes and also high cholesterol. So they may have issues with weight. There is a higher incidence of diabetes in this patient population so they think that if they see a specialist they'll be able to kind of realize that it's a combination of the two going on. And the best way to treat it is you can talk to them about a healthier lifestyle, trying to move around more. Things like that can decrease insulin resistance and there's medication that's used for diabetes and PCOS, mainly metformin which lowers that insulin resistance and can really help them. It can be either an excess level of testosterone or just an imbalance of the ratio of estrogen and testosterone. So another way to treat these patients of they're having irregular periods is to put them on an oral contraceptive pill which is estrogen which balances out the estrogen and testosterone, it regulates the periods and may be of some benefit to some of the other things like the acne and the hair.More »
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If you feel like you're alone in the agony of menopause, think again. Take this survey to see how you compare with what other women experience.
Last Modified: 2012-12-12 | Tags »
menopause, menopause symptoms, hot flashes, night sweats, weight gain, menopausal
Curious as to what exactly bioidentical hormones are? And how they could help you manage your menopause symptoms? Well then, watch this to learn more.
Transcript: Oprah was all about big give-aways -- iPads, new cars, vacation packages. Well, you can add bioidentical...
Oprah was all about big give-aways -- iPads, new cars, vacation packages. Well, you can add bioidentical hormone therapy advice to that list. She started taking bioidentical hormones during her early 50s when the path towards menopause caught her "off guard". So what exactly ARE bioidentical hormones? And are they any different- or better - than the FDA approved estrogen and progestin that most women use? Bioidentical estrogen is synthesized from a chemical extracted from wild yams and soy. The hormone is identical in molecular structure to estrogen produced by the ovaries. Bioidentical progesterone is pure progesterone and it is micronized for better absorption. There are several FDA-approved bioidentical estrogens and ONE progesterone. There are also FDA-approved hormone medications that are NOT bioidentical: conjugated equine estrogen, from horse urine, and medroxyprogesterone acetate--a synthetic progestin. Now that major medical organizations have come out in support of hormone therapy for 5 years or less in low risk women under the age of 60, the question is DOES IT MAKE A DIFFERENCE IF YOU USE BIOIDENTICAL HORMONES OR NOT? Is one form safer than the other? Or more effective? There is no definite research to answer those questions. You and your doctor need to determine what works best for you. However, if you get bioidentical hormones from a compounding pharmacy, instead of using the FDA approved ones, you cannot be sure of the dose or quality. For more information on managing menopause symptoms, check out other videos in this series.More »
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Some women's menstrual cycles are reliably painful and uncomfortable, while other women barely notice when their periods come and go. What's your experience? Tell us in this survey!
Last Modified: 2012-11-15 | Tags »
menstrual cramps, tampons, pms, premenstrual, heavy period, late period, early period, puberty, sanitary pads
Hot flashes, mood swings, erratic periods. Need to know what on earth is happening to your body? And quick? Well don’t sweat it. Here’s menopause in a flash!
Transcript: Hot flashes, mood swings, erratic periods. Need to know what on earth is happening to your body? And...
Hot flashes, mood swings, erratic periods. Need to know what on earth is happening to your body? And quick? Well don't sweat it. Here's what it's all about -- in a flash: What we commonly call menopause actually consists of 3 phases - PREmenopause, PERImenopause, and POSTmenopause. Menopause itself is simply the point in time when 12 months have passed since your last period. This progression is a natural part of life that needs to be managed, but it is NOT a health problem or a disease. During PREmenopause, hormone-related symptoms such as breast tenderness and bloating, are caused by ovulation. PERIMENOPAUSE symptoms such as mood swings, hot flashes, heart palpitations, and sometimes brain fog or confusion, signal that your body is beginning to produce less consistent levels of hormones and ovulation is becoming irregular. MENOPAUSE is the permanent end of reproduction. Your ovaries stop producing eggs, so estrogen and progesterone stop cycling and stay at low levels. Testosterone levels decline gradually over the coming years. 6,000 women, with an average age of 51, reach menopause every day. POSTMENOPAUSAL women often experience vaginal dryness and thinning tissue in the urinary tract can cause pain during intercourse and urinary problems. Topical estrogen can often help. In later years, around 25 percent of women develop osteoporosis and a vast majority have heart problems. In many cases, changes in diet and exercise can MINIMIZE these health challenges. And the North American Menopause Society reports 51 percent of POSTmenopausal women say they are happier and more fulfilled than they have ever been. For more in-depth information on menopause, check out other videos in this series.More »
Last Modified: 2012-10-02 | Tags »
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While HT, or hormone therapy, as it is now called, certainly came with its benefits, it does have it's risks. See what they are
Transcript: When menopause symptoms hit actress Jane Seymour, they hit her hard. So at age 47 she weighed her options:...
When menopause symptoms hit actress Jane Seymour, they hit her hard. So at age 47 she weighed her options: diet, exercise, natural supplements, or hormone replacement therapy. She went with hormones. While HT, or hormone therapy, as it is now called, certainly came with its benefits, seven years down the line Seymour stopped because of what she feared to be risks of the therapy -- blood clots, stroke and breast cancer. But within months Seymour was back on hormones, this time at half the dose and taking it in a different form - a patch, rather than tablet. What worked for Seymour doesn't work for every woman. In fact, your best choice for HT depends on your age, health history, how long you've been having symptoms and what they are, and when your periods stopped. But the news is, you have a choice. After several years in which women were really SCARED away from considering hormones to treat symptoms , new recommendations have surfaced. Fifteen major medical and health organizations, including the North American Menopause Society and the Endocrine Society have joined together to advocate that up to FIVE years of HT is safe and effective for women who are NOT at increased risk of breast cancer or heart disease AND who are no more than 10 years past their last period. It is also recommended for women who have EARLY menopause, before the age of 40, or induced menopause because of a hysterectomy, for example. Determining what form of HT you will use, should be done in consultation with your doctor. You may only need topical preparations such as a vaginal estrogen ring to ease urinary problems and vaginal dryness. For hot flashes and heart palpitations or other persistent symptoms, oral hormone therapy that combines estrogen and progesterone or delivers estrogen alone -that's only for women who have had a hysterectomy-- can be very effective. Or you may opt for a patch or creams. There's also a progestin IUD that is used in conjunction with estrogen preparations. For more information on managing menopause symptoms, check out other videos in this series.More »
Last Modified: 2013-06-13 | Tags »
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HRT -- hormone replacement therapy, or simply HT for hormone therapy, as it's now called -- effectively manages menopause symptoms, such as hot flashes, mood swings, AND vaginal dryness. Find out how.
Transcript: When searching FOR menopause symptom relief, you've probably considered it all - exercise, diet, natural...
When searching FOR menopause symptom relief, you've probably considered it all - exercise, diet, natural supplements - but what about HRT? HRT -- hormone replacement therapy, or simply HT for hormone therapy, as it is now called -- effectively manages menopause symptoms, such as hot flashes, mood swings, AND vaginal dryness. These symptoms develop because of a decline in estrogen during the 2 to 8 years leading up to menopause. HT is also prescribed for women who go through menopause before the age of 40 or have induced menopause. THE hormone therapy replaces the estrogen and progesterone THAT"S MISSING FROM THE BODY, AND eases symptoms. Depending on the form and dose prescribed, length of use will vary. But most medical organizations agree that oral hormone therapy is safe to take for 5 years for women in the early stages of post-menopause without added risk for heart disease or breast cancer . Intravaginal delivery of the hormones is localized, not systemic, so much smaller doses can be given for extended use. But as with any medication there are side effects. Oral HT can cause bleeding, bloating, breast tenderness or enlargement, headaches, mood changes, and nausea. If this happens to you, try a lower dose! If you do decide to take oral HT, re-evaluate your dose and whether you need to continue it every six months. For more information on menopause, view the other videos in this series.More »
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When it comes to managing menopause symptoms, you are what you eat. Your nutritional choices can ease symptoms while giving you that needed extra boost of energy.
Transcript: When it comes to managing midlife symptoms, you are what you eat. Your nutritional choices can go a...
When it comes to managing midlife symptoms, you are what you eat. Your nutritional choices can go a long way to keeping you healthy and full of energy, ESPECIALLY AFTER MENOPAUSE, when it becomes easier to gain weight, and you're more susceptible to vaginal dryness, heart disease, cognitive problems and osteoporosis. To lower cholesterol and triglycerides and protect your heart and digestive tract, make sure you eat plenty of fresh veggies and fruit, lean protein, and about 21 grams of fiber-that's equivalent of 1 cup of black beans and a fresh pear. Also enjoy raw carrots, apple slices, seaweed, and soy-based products such edamame. Eating fish, such as salmon and trout that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, helps lower cholesterol, and there is some indication it may fight off everything from cancer to dementia. Nuts, spices such as basil and oregano, even capers also offer a small dose of omega-3s. To ease memory loss get into blueberries, blackberries and raspberries. Their high antioxidant level fights inflammation. You also want to build muscle, resist weight gain and keep your bones strong. So in addition to what I mentioned before, make sure you go light on saturated fats in red meat and on sweets too. For bone strength, you'll need at least 1,200mg of calcium a day -- from low or no fat dairy. And plenty of vitamin D from sunshine, food and supplements. Despite lower official recommendations, many doctors now advise postmenopausal women to take 1000 IU of D in a supplement every day. And while you're upgrading your diet -- consider going easy on coffee, tea, alcohol, colas, refined sugars and spicy foods. These can trigger hot flashes. Salt -- it can raise blood pressure if you are sensitive to it. And stick with one glass of wine a day -- that's a proven heart health booster -- but more increases your risk for everything from breast cancer to obesity. For more information on how to best care for your body before and after menopause, check out other videos in this series.More »
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Yes, exercise can ease menopause symptoms. See how it improves mood swings, memory retention, and reduces bone loss, vaginal dryness, hot flashes and weight gain.
Transcript: Yes, exercise CAN ease menopause symptoms. Studies show that 30 minutes of moderate activity 3 to 5...
Yes, exercise CAN ease menopause symptoms. Studies show that 30 minutes of moderate activity 3 to 5 times a week can improve mood swings, increase memory retention, and lessen bone loss, vaginal dryness, hot flashes and weight gain. The best routine combines aerobic, strength training andmflexibility exercises. Regular aerobic exercise, such as swimming, brisk walking, running or biking, helps keep weight under control. It also releases endorphins, which boost your mood and act as natural pain killers. For some women the increased blood flow helps vaginal dryness. Aim for some aerobic activity 5 days a week. Exercise may trigger hot flashes as your muscles warm up , but relax! This is when you are supposed to sweat. Strength training with dumbbells, exercise bands or weight machines builds your muscles and prevents bone loss. But don't do it more than 2-3 times a week. Most important, don't neglect flexibility exercises. They help prevent injury and improve your range of motion. Some flexibility-promoting exercise, such as yoga and tai chi, offer ADDED benefits. They also calm the mind and reduce stress levels.For complete exercise guidance you may want to consult your doctor and a certified personal trainer at your local gym.More »
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Menopause emotional ups and downs can affect relationships. Here’s how to make sure you don’t hurt yourself or the ones you love – or like.
Transcript: Kitty Forman, the doting housewife on TV's 'That 70s Show', made us laugh when her ever-changing moods...
Kitty Forman, the doting housewife on TV's 'That 70s Show', made us laugh when her ever-changing moods had her husband walking on eggshells. Kitty's menopause experience is one that many women -- and men -- share. And such emotional ups and downs can affect relationships. Here's how to make sure you don't hurt yourself or the ones you love - or like. Let them know what you are going through. By talking about your symptoms, those around you will be able to talk about them too, and offer you suggestions and support. Take responsibility for managing your symptoms. Don't ignore them or think you're stuck with them. Talk to your doctor about hormone therapy, either oral or topical. Upgrade your diet and opt for regular aerobic exercise - 30 minutes a day 5 days a week. Improving circulation and shedding extra pounds will ease symptoms. Reduce stress. Yoga, meditation, or rhythmic breathing can help dispel mood swings and anxiety and improve concentration. For more information on managing menopause, check out other videos in this series.More »
Last Modified: 2012-10-02 | Tags »
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What causes your libido to climb and suddenly plummet, only to climb again? The combination of estrogen and your very own levels of testosterone are powering this wild ride. See how.
Transcript: Have you heard that heading towards menopause can be a real rollercoaster? That includes taking your...
Have you heard that heading towards menopause can be a real rollercoaster? That includes taking your sex drive on a ride, too. and sometimes...for the better. What causes your libido to climb and suddenly plummet, only to climb again? Besides the forces of everyday life, it's the combination of estrogen and your very own levels of testosterone that are powering this wild ride. During PERImenoause, the years leading up to menopause, estrogen levels fluctuate dramatically, while testosterone levels change gradually. This causes an imbalance in the proportion of sex hormones that your body and brain are exposed to. But once estrogen levels stabilize at the new, low point after your period stops completely, these is a profound effect on the vagina. It's blood supply is impaired, the tissue thins, and natural lubrication is reduced. You become less sensitive to touch. The combination can make intercourse both uninteresting and painful. IN addition, the gradual loss of testosterone can affect desire as well as arousal. Fortunately, there are ways to stimulate interest and increase pleasure, even with the hormonal highs and lows. The postmenopausal brain is a powerful sex organ - use it to keep your interest sparked and your body primed. Although it may take longer to become aroused, , the more you think about sex, the more easily excited you may become, especially if you get creative with your techniques, including masturbation. With your partner you may find that using sex toys, watching videos, taking sensual baths, sharing massages, and the use of FLAVORED lubricants can make vaginal or oral intercourse more enjoyable. If anal intercourse turns you on, you'll need even more lubricants than for vaginal intercourse in order to protect delicate postmenopausal tissue. Outside the bedroom, try improving your diet and exercising regularly, as well as getting enough sleep each night. You can also use topical estrogen creams or the estrogen ring. They help keep delicate vaginal tissue supple and prevent pain or tearing during sex. Since they are not taken orally they don't have the risks associated with higher dose oral hormone therapy. Ask your doctor about a combo estrogen-testosterone pill. The testosterone gel that men use is too high a dose for women and causes negative side effects. For more information on how to take the reins during this life-changing adventure, check out other videos in this series.More »
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Not a fan of hormones replacement therapy when it comes to managing menopause symptoms? Well, here are a few alternative treatments.
Transcript: Rosie O'Donnell's "hot flash haircut" may be one way to deal with night sweats. But if you're not up...
Rosie O'Donnell's "hot flash haircut" may be one way to deal with night sweats. But if you're not up for chopping off your hair, there are alternative remedies for managing menopause symptoms. Other hot flash remedies include: *Recognizing and avoiding hot flash triggers-such as spicy foods, too many layers of clothing, especially at night, or hair dryers set on high. *Losing just 10% of your body weight, if you're overweight, can help cool the flames. *And while you're at it, AVOID alcohol, and tobacco. As for the much touted black cohosh, soy products and wild yam therapy -- no reliable study has been able to confirm their benefits when taken to ease hot flashes or other symptoms of menopause. To even out your hormone-driven mood swings: *Opt for regular physical activity. Aim for 30 minutes most days of aerobic activity and mix in 2 to 3 days a week of strength training. As it improves your mood, it will help protect you from two serious postmenopausal health problems--loss of muscle mass and weight gain. *Practice stress reduction techniques such as meditation, yoga and tai chi. It makes it easier to deal with symptoms, lowers blood pressure and improves your overall health and wellbeing. Other health challenges that arrive POST menopause include heart disease, vaginal dryness, osteoporosis, weight gain, and dementia. Some of these challenges are related to lack of hormones, some are the result of health problems like obesity. But whatever the combination of triggers, you want to protect yourself from those problems. Focus on eating plenty of whole grains, vegetables and fruits. Make sure you get enough vitamin D, calcium, potassium and magnesium from food. That will give you whole-body vitality, protect your heart and mind and help you retain muscle tone. To ease vaginal dryness, try vitamin E oil as a topical lubricant, practice Kegel exercises to improve muscle tone and ENJOY masturbation to promote natural lubrication. For more information on menopause watch the other videos this series.More »
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