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PCOD (Polycystic Ovarian Disease)

PCOD or Polycystic Ovarian Disease is a medical condition that affects menstruation, fertility and the overall appearance of the woman. Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a genetic condition caused by hormonal dysfunction and is one of the most common metabolic disorders among premenopausal females. Since PCOS and PCOD are often used interchangeably, it is a good idea to understand PCOS too. PCOS is a combination of signs and symptoms of androgen excess along with ovarian dysfunction without other specific diagnoses.

Riya Shah, 19 years old, came in for a consultation with a sonography report stating that she had PCOD. She and her mother were almost in tears and visibly affected by the report.

Upon detailed clinical evaluation, it was found that she had irregular periods, excessive hair growth on her face and back, weight gain and acne.

PCOD has been on the rise in the last few decades. It is estimated that nearly 20% of all Indian women, or to break down the numbers, about 1 in every 5 women, suffer from PCOD.

Book an online appointment with Dr. Vaishali Chavan for Obstetrician & Gynecologist related issues

What is PCOD?

Polycystic Ovarian Disease (PCOD) is a medical condition that affects women where the ovaries generate partially mature or immature eggs in large numbers, during their reproductive years. Over time these immature ova can develop into cysts in the ovaries. Due to cysts, the ovaries become large & secrete large amounts of testosterone, the male sex hormone, which causes infertility problems, irregular periods, unwanted weight gain, and other health issues

Difference Between PCOD and PCOS

The names PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome) and PCOD (Polycystic Ovarian Disease) are often used interchangeably, but medically speaking, there are differences between the two.

PCOD is a medical condition where the women’s ovaries produce and release immature ova, which can transform into cysts. Women suffering from this disorder usually experience mild to moderate symptoms. These symptoms can be effectively managed with lifestyle changes, including diet modifications and medication.

PCOS or Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, meanwhile, is a more severe condition where the ovaries produce large quantities of male hormones, resulting in excessive cyst formation. This is inherently a metabolic disorder and is associated

with a greater risk of developing high blood pressure, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, obesity, uterine and breast cancers. Women suffering from PCOS may often experience infertility.

If you experience any of the symptoms associated with PCOD, it is imperative to consult a gynecologist.


The exact cause of PCOD is unknown, but it is thought to be affected by genetic, environmental and endocrinological factors.

Mounting evidence suggests that PCOS might be a complex multigenic (involving more than one gene) disorder with strong environmental influences, including diet and lifestyle factors. This, conversely causes epigenetic (epigenetics is the study of how behavior's and environment can affect genetic mechanisms) modifications.

Some of the main contributing factors include

  • A sedentary lifestyle
  • Diet consisting of junk food, and unhealthy food preferences
  • Pollution
  • Stress

Physiological Changes Caused by PCOS

Excessive insulin production stimulates the body to increase the production of androgens, which inhibits ovulation. Inflammation is another important factor. Low-grade inflammation in the body increases the androgen levels in the body. This may manifest through increased facial hair, increased body hair and acne outbreaks. They may also cause cardiovascular changes in the body.


Must Read : What is PCOD? Signs, Causes, How to Diagnose and Treatments


Treatment of PCOD involves both medication and lifestyle changes.

  • Diet modification helps in managing symptoms. Even a 5% reduction in body weight can help reduce symptoms significantly.
  • Eliminating sugars and reducing fatty foods
  • Regular exercise
  • Cyclic hormonal treatment and ovulation induction medication to help regulate the menstrual cycle.
  • Skin treatments to reduce acne and darkening of the skin.
  • Laparoscopic surgery, whenever indicate
  • Infertility treatment may be required
  • Treatment to manage other associated health conditions

If you have been diagnosed with PCOD, it is important to visit a gynecologist. Currently, there is no permanent cure for PCOD, but women can lead relatively normal lives with lifestyle modification and treatment.

Want to consult the best gynecologists in India? Please find the links below.

  1. Best Gynecologists in Bangalore
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  3. Top Obstetricians & Gynecologists in Mumbai
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  9. Top Gynecologist In Delhi
  10. Top Gynecologists in Faridabad

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