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on July 7, 2011
I recommend this book for anyone who wants to know more about this condition. It explains what the disease is, how to treat it, and what all those tests your doctor ordered mean. There are also chapters about non-medical treatment options, like diet and exercise to control weight and sugar cravings. It is especially helpful to share this book with well meaning but clueless family and friends who advise fad diets as a quick fix.
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on April 2, 2011
I found this book to be incredibly useful. Not only did it provide tons of information on the condition and the various symptoms, it also provides remedies, contacts, and even names and addresses of clinics, doctors, and health food stores. I would recommend this book to anyone who needs information on this condition.
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on December 14, 2012
This book is about what the disease is and not what to do about the disease. There are no diet plans, exercise plans, recommendations about treating symptoms. Nothing other than consult a professional. Well, I already knew that, but there are no professionals in my area to consult. This book is not helpful at all.
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on December 17, 2012
This book has helped me learn alot about PCOS and what effects it!! It is very informational.and would be a great book for anyone just finding out they have PCOS. Has taught me alot that drs dont tell u when u are diagnosed!!
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on July 6, 2009
I wish I had this book when I was first diagnosed with PCOS. This book introduces many different aspects of PCOS evaluation and treatment options in language that the patient can understand.
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on November 24, 2008
If you've just been diagnosed with PCOS this book gives a lot of information and explanations to help you through the diagnosis
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on January 20, 2005
I have to say this was a good book because PCOS is a lousy and misunderstood disorder, and anything that helps get the word out about what it is and how to treat it is a GOOD BOOK. This book does cover the basics, such as how PCOS is thought to stem from insulin resistance and how diet, exercise, and certain medications can work to help relieve this puzzling and distressing syndrome. It also gives a very nice overview of alternative/complimentary/natural therapies.

There is probably nothing good to be said about this book that hasn't been said, so I will focus instead on the things that alarmed me. In no particular order:

1. The author claims that it is not understood why women with PCOS have higher miscarriage rates than healthy women. In fact, it is often the case that pregnant women with PCOS have low progesterone rates. It is imperative that a woman with PCOS have her progesterone levels tested should she become pregnant, and that she use supplementary progesterone under her doctor's care if need be. This is of course only one cause of miscarriage but is very common among women with PCOS (who have low progesterone as a general rule), it is easy to check, and has the potential to save a pregnancy. (I am editing this point to point out that many years and many fertility treatments later - I am no longer a believer in the progesterone theory. I think weak ovulations leads to low progesterone and therefore m/c. Supplementing with p4 does work sometimes but in most cases I think low p4 indicates an unhealthy pregnancy rather than something than can be fixed)

2. The author claims that after the first few weeks of pregnancy (actually once he says few and once he says 12) a woman should go off a metformin. In fact many women stay on metformin throughout their pregnancies and have perfectly healthy babies. Some doctors believe this can help prevent gestational diabetes (which women with PCOS are more prone to) and can help control excess weight gain. (I personally stayed on metformin throughout my pregnancy and continued on it while nursing. I believe 100% that my health was the better for it and my baby's was none the worse for it)

3. In mentioning birth control pills, Yasmin is not mentioned. This pill is made with a derivitive of spironalactone (a drug with anti-androgen effects which is mentioned) and is the only pill with such a feature available in the US. As such, a lot of women with PCOS have wonderful symptom relief on it. Other countries have Diane 35 which for some reason is not approved here. Yasmin has been around for a few years and this is a new book, so I am really surprised it wasn't mentioned.

4. At least one BCP that is suggested is a tri-phasic pill... however most other literature suggests that women with PCOS avoid tri-phasic pills. Of course no one pill is right for all women, with or without PCOS, but I found this curious.

5. The author states that there is no benefit to combining the insulin medications, such as using metformin and Avandia together. In fact, many women do not respond to one or the other but respond quite well when the two are combined. (Check some message boards with medication forums)

6. I feel that at times the author lends false hope to the belief that by lowering your androgen levels via diet, exercise, and insulin meds, the "hair" issues (excess body hair, loss of head hair) will be reduced. In fact... sadly, not many women seem to experience much relief from these symptoms without additional therapies such as laser (for excess hair) or other medications (spironalctone, etc).

All in all this is definately good reading for any woman with PCOS and/or the people who care about her... but as with all things, it must be read with a grain of salt and not taken as the absolute core of truth about this condition. The number one thing a woman with PCOS can do is educate educate educate, both herself and her loved ones. This book definately has a role there, but do not stop with just it. Read other books and definately check out internet forums to learn what has and hasn't worked for other women living with PCOS.
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VINE VOICEon May 9, 2010
When I finished reading What to Do When the Doctor Says It's PCOS I felt much more informed about PCOS, what it means to have PCOS, the symptoms of PCOS, and what I can do to help the symptoms of PCOS, including weight gain. It helped me understand what is wrong with my body and I even learned a bit about how my thyroid interacts with my PCOS. I also learned that many people with PCOS can go on to become diabetic and what I can do to avoid this happening to me. I give this 5 stars because it is well written, laid out nicely, and very informative.
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on January 26, 2008
Considering that this was published in 2003 and written by a pair of non-specialists (a family practitioner as opposed to an endocrinologist and a how-to author who's written about topics from horses to decorating) it's a good overview of the topic. However the coverage of individual topics is superficial, the tone is dumbed down, and then there are a couple of flaws that really stick in my craw. The chapter covering how a normal period is supposed to work was one of the most reader-unfriendly descriptions I've ever read. It was disorganized, confusing and patronizing. Worse, the book harps in chapter after chapter about weight loss, implying shamelessly that obesity is a cause of PCOS and weight loss is a treatment for it. In this the authors repeat the prejuidice one sees so often against the fundamentally benign and normal variation of adipose tissue.
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on May 29, 2004
I was diagnosed with PCOS about 4 weeks ago after dealing with the awful symptoms for 9 years. I immediatly bought this book and loved it. It explains everything you need to know about PCOS; symptoms, treatments, and much more, if you have PCOS and feel the need to know everything there is to know about your condition you have to have this book.
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