Health concerns were at the forefront of the Feb. 26 episode of Teen Mom OG. Catelynn Lowell devastatingly revealed she had a miscarriage, while Maci Bookout visited a doctor to talk about her polycystic ovary syndrome (sometimes referred to as polycystic ovarian syndrome). If you're wondering what PCOS is, you're not alone. The condition can seem mysterious to patients, but we can try to provide a little clarity…
Maci might take comfort to know that PCOS is a common condition among women of reproductive age. In fact, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office on Women's Health, 5 to 10 percent of women between 15 and 44 have PCOS, and it may be more common among women whose relatives have the condition. The exact cause of PCOS is unknown, but factors include high levels of androgens and insulin.
In women with PCOS, the ovaries may not develop eggs property or may not release them regularly. PCOS can result in irregular or missed menstrual periods and can cause infertility and the development of cysts in the ovaries. People with PCOS may also experience hair on the face or chin, acne on the upper body, thinning hair, weight gain or difficulty losing weight, darkening of the skin, and skin tags.
Additionally, studies have also linked PCOS with elevated risks for diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, sleep apnea, depression, anxiety, and endometrial cancer.
There's no cure for PCOS, but the symptoms can be managed. And having PCOS does not mean a woman can't get pregnant, as the Office on Women's Health points out. Doctors can help women with PCOS find ways to ovulate.
Maci referenced her PCOS diagnosis in a 2015 Teen Mom OG recap when she and now-husband Taylor McKinney discussed their decision to go off birth control. "This was something we both wanted together," she explained. "We didn't want to prevent it any more than it was already being prevented naturally."
Like her castmate, Maci also suffered a miscarriage, as she revealed earlier this season. She has welcomed three children, however: one with Ryan Edwards, and two with Taylor. Hopefully, she can have as many kids as she wants, PCOS notwithstanding!
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