Health Women wait years for polycystic ovary syndrome diagnosis

Women wait years for polycystic ovary syndrome diagnosis

One third of women with a chronic disorder that damages the ovaries said it took more than two years for them to receive a correct diagnosis, a new study has found.

And those lengthy delays occurred even though the condition affects almost one in five women of childbearing age.

An estimated nine to 18 per cent of women of childbearing age in Australia have Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) – a chronic disorder that affects their metabolic, psychological and reproductive health, especially fertility.

Nearly two in three sufferers of PCOS were dissatisfied with the length of time they waited and the number of healthcare professionals they had to see before receiving a diagnosis, a new study has revealed.

Nearly half of the 1,385 women surveyed in the landmark Monash University study saw three or more healthcare providers before they were diagnosed and the process took more than two years for a third of survey respondents.

Women with PCOS face an increased risk of developing diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Monash School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine Professor Helena Teede said less than a quarter of the survey respondents were satisfied with the information they received about common treatments for PCOS.

“Our findings show women are dissatisfied with the diagnosis experience and that there are clear opportunities to improve awareness and health outcomes for women with PCOS,” Professor Teede said.

The results of the study will inform international efforts to improve awareness and health outcomes for women with PCOS.

You can find out more about this landmark survey here. Story credit: Monash University Newsroom

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