Metformin Study Shows Drug Has Promise for Women with PCOS

new study has shown that Metformin can be an effective treatment for women with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). This is good news for women who have been struggling with infertility related to PCOS, according to Dr. Paul Magarelli, MD, a Colorado Springs infertility specialist.

The use of combined oral contraceptive pills (COCP) and metformin, either as monotherapy or combined, was evaluated for the treatment of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) in a recent systematic review published in the journal Clinical Endocrinology.

Study authors systematically searched electronic databases for applicable randomized controlled trials that assessed these therapies for the management of hormonal and clinical features of PCOS. “Outcomes were prioritized as critical for informing a decision about an intervention or important or not important, according to GRADE,” they explained, adding, “Outcomes prioritized by women and health professionals included: irregular cycles, insulin resistance, weight, BMI, thromboembolic events and gastrointestinal effects.”

“PCOS is one of the leading causes of infertility in women,” said Dr. Magarelli. “Many of my female patients suffer from PCOS, which causes menstrual dysfunction and includes symptoms such as acne, excess hair growth, and occasionally, male pattern balding.”

To support his treatment of patients with PCOS, Dr. Magarelli’s practice partners with an acupuncturist, Dr. Diane Cridennda of East Winds Acupuncture.

Dr. Cridennda’s practice includes a special focus on food choices. 

“The one thing all women with PCOS have in common is insulin resistance. For this reason, a solid nutritional plan is especially important,” Dr. Cridennda said. “This commonality also helps explain why Metformin is helpful. It helps with high blood sugar, the most obvious result of having insulin resistance.”

A close examination of a woman’s menstrual cycle is key, according to Dr. Cridennda. “In Chinese medicine we can tell a lot about a women’s health by their menstrual cycle. I can usually flag PCOS upon delving deeper into the patterns I see in each woman.”

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