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Incorporating patient preference into the management of infertility in women with polycystic ovary syndrome

Authors Okoroafor UC, Jungheim ES

Received 2 March 2012

Accepted for publication 28 March 2012

Published 24 May 2012 Volume 2012:6 Pages 407—415

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/PPA.S25286

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Ugochi C Okoroafor, Emily S Jungheim

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Washington University, St Louis, MO, USA

Abstract: Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a heterogeneous condition characterized by anovulation, hyperandrogenism, and polycystic ovaries. Because of the heterogeneous nature of PCOS, women affected by the condition often require a customized approach for ovulation induction when trying to conceive. Treating symptoms of PCOS in overweight and obese women should always incorporate lifestyle changes with the goal of weight-loss, as many women with PCOS will ovulate after losing 5%–10% of their body weight. On the other hand, other factors must be considered including the woman’s age, age-related decline in fertility, and previous treatments she may have already tried. Fortunately, multiple options for ovulation induction exist for women with PCOS. This paper reviews specific ovulation induction options available for women with PCOS, the benefits and efficacy of these options, and the related side effects and risks women can anticipate with the various options that may affect treatment adherence. The paper also reviews the recommended evidence-based strategies for treating PCOS-related infertility that allow for incorporation of the patient’s preference. Finally, it briefly reviews emerging data and ongoing studies regarding newer agents that have shown great promise as first-line agents for the treatment of infertility in women with PCOS.

Keywords: polycystic ovary syndrome, anovulation, clomiphene citrate, letrozole, metformin, obesity

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