How can I improve my fertility if I have PCOS?
Real Mom Problem
“I think I have PCOS and I'm super scared I will not be able to get pregnant. Can you give me some advice?”
- 1. Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a common condition that affects the balance of a woman's hormones
- 2. PCOS can cause weight gain, facial hair growth, irregular periods, and fertility problems
- 3. Medications, herbs, and natural supplements can be used to treat PCOS
- 4. Weight control can be a very effective treatment for PCOS
- 5. Remember, the answers below are not medical advice and should not be relied on as medical advice or used in lieu of speaking with a medical professional
Real Mom Solutions
Are you trying to conceive while struggling with PCOS? You're not alone! Find out which treatments have worked for the ladies of CafeMom.
PCOS Medication Works for Some Women
I have PCOS. My doctor put me on birth control pills to help shrink my cysts. I am working on losing weight. And there is a natural medication called vitex that has helped a lot of women with PCOS ovulate and have good outcomes.
I was diagnosed with PCOS. I hadn't had a cycle in almost three years and found out my testosterone was too high. I have been taking metformin. It is originally a diabetic drug that levels insulin, but it is used in PCOS patients because it aids in leveling hormones. I have also been eating healthier and being more active so I have lost some weight. I just had my first cycle last week. It takes time. If I want, my doctor said she can give me some Clomid with it, once I become more regular.
I have PCOS and my doctor put me on metformin to aid in losing weight. I lost 30 pounds, then started doing ovulation predictor kits, and we ended up pregnant our first cycle of coming back to trying to conceive. We tried for six years and finally found a doctor that aided us in our journey.
I have PCOS and conceived both my kiddos on Clomid.
I have PCOS. My first was conceived naturally but unplanned. My second and third were conceived with Clomid after months of anovulation. We are now trying for number four, and I am on metformin to try to help. Metformin is amazing for a lot of women with PCOS to help minimize the symptoms related to insulin resistance and hormonal imbalance. It isn't a fertility treatment, but neither is Clomid technically. It's a PCOS treatment that can make conceiving WAY more likely (to avoid fertility treatments like IUI, IVF, etc.)!
If you have PCOS, I highly recommend talking to your doctor about dexamethasone. I was having trouble ovulating with just the Clomid alone, but with the dexamethasone I got pregnant right away. It's worth a shot! I had never heard of it before the doctor mentioned it, but it worked like a charm! It just takes away the extra male hormones in your system. I took 2mg of it.
Others Recommend Natural Alternatives
Vitex works great for women with PCOS but unfortunately it can take up to three months to build in your system. I bought my vitex from GNC and Amazon.com for under $8. I'm also saving up for a medicated cycle.
Vitex can help you naturally shorten your cycles. Vitex is a natural supplement, otherwise known as chaste tree berry. It helps promote fertility by boosting progesterone.
Some women with PCOS find help with natural alternatives like vitex, or soy isoflavones, or maca root to help keep their hormonal systems regulated. You should also start increasing your water intake, start a prenatal vitamin with folic acid, buy some ovulation predictor tests so you can make sure you're ovulating and try to maintain (or lose if needed) your weight, as fat can make PCOS symptoms worse by increasing your insulin resistance. I have three (hopefully soon four) babies with PCOS so it's very possible.
Acupuncture is awesome! I did it when I was a teenager to help with my PCOS and excess facial hair and it helped. I'm thinking about trying it again to help with fertility so I don't have to go on Clomid.
There are TONS of natural things to "fix" PCOS. I have PCOS, and my only child was a result of natural remedies after Clomid failed repeatedly. Don't rule out vitex, soy isoflavones, and other natural remedies.
Diet & Lifestyle Changes Helped Others
I was diagnosed with PCOS 13 years ago. Over the years I tried Clomid and metformin to conceive and was on a few other meds for my PCOS symptoms. I had no luck conceiving during the 10 years I actively tried. I believe that PCOS is best controlled with diet, before meds. I changed my diet, lost over a hundred pounds, my physical PCOS symptoms disappeared, and my period became regular and less painful. Two years later, I got pregnant. I'd rather not be on meds, but even if you have to or choose to, they'll work better and faster when combined with diet and weight loss.
I have PCOS. Charting, temping, and ovulation predictor kits are wasted efforts for most women with PCOS due to the elevated hormone levels. I tried all of them and neither worked correctly for me. Plus, all of these things are for pinpointing ovulation, and most women with PCOS either do not ovulate on their own, or rarely do. If you are looking for a natural remedy, it is weight loss, exercise, and healthy diet. Many women can cure themselves this way. For me, I found my PCOS was caused by insulin resistance, which is common. I was prescribed metformin (a diabetic medication) and a diet. I followed both religiously, lost 30 pounds, and got pregnant on my first normal cycle since starting. Good luck, and don't expect to get pregnant right away. It took me over a year. With dedication and hard work, you can get pregnant.
Go on a low-carb diet and try to avoid sugars! Also, metformin really helps PCOS as it helps lower sugars and testosterone, so it helps you to ovulate.
I have PCOS. After my son was born, my periods never returned. Never. I gained a lot of weight out of nowhere, even have embarrassing facial hair. My doctor prescribed metformin and Provera. I never took metformin because it made me too sick and I don't take the Provera anymore because I recently lost 20 lbs which has brought my periods back on their own. Losing weight really is the "cure" for PCOS.