Can Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome be cured? Unfolding the Concept of Secondary Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome!

J Obstet Gynaecol India. 2019 Aug;69(4):297-302. doi: 10.1007/s13224-019-01253-z. Epub 2019 Jul 18.


Classic polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is one of the commonest endocrine metabolic disorders in women of reproductive years. It is very disappointing that we have still not been able to know the exact cause, and hence, we cannot completely cure this syndrome. With availability of effective drugs and lifestyle modification, it can only be controlled and symptoms can be reduced. There are some well-defined factors which lead to PCOS phenotype. A concept of secondary PCOS is being described recently. This condition, even though rare, is completely curable, as majority of these factors are treatable. Hence, it is advisable to actively look for these conditions and offer treatment in time. This editorial gives an account of various causes of secondary PCOS, gives broader view of PCOS phenotypes and aims for an insight into pathophysiological aspects of PCOS. The clinical categorization by HA-PODS nomenclature of both primary and secondary PCOS can minimize diagnostic and therapeutic pitfalls and will serve as a checklist to ensure the appropriate investigation is ordered and specific treatment is initiated as per diagnostic code. This will achieve uniformity in therapies offered and also enable better comparison of data and a smooth conduct of research which is much needed in this field.

Keywords: Autoimmune thyroiditis; Congenital adrenal hyperplasia; HA-PODS; Hyperandrogenaemia; Hyperprolactinaemia; Hypothyroidism; Insulin resistance; Menstrual dysfunction; Obesity; Polycystic ovarian syndrome; Secondary PCOS.

Publication types

  • Editorial