PCOD

PCOD vs PCOS: The important differences and similarities to know

PCOD is due to a hormonal imbalance while PCOS is an endocrine system disorder

PCOD vs PCOS symptoms are similar, but their intensity and appearance varies

Diet and exercise go a long way in managing and controlling PCOS and PCOD

May 25th, 2021
3 mins read
PCOD vs PCOS: How these common women’s conditions differ

PCOD and PCOS are same or different? This is a question that befuddles many. Simply put, they aren’t the same thing. PCOD or Poly Cystic Ovarian Disease and PCOS or Poly Cystic Ovarian Syndrome both concern a woman’s ovaries, have similar symptoms, and culminate in hormonal fluctuations, but that’s where the similarities end. 

PCOD vs PCOS: Key differences

PCOD  PCOS 
PCOD is a condition that affects 1 in 8 women in India and is caused by a hormonal imbalance in the reproductive system.  

 

An excessive secretion of the male hormone impacts the ovaries, resulting in a build-up of immature eggs that aren’t released.  

 

Over a period of time, these turn into cysts, and the cysts multiply into more cysts, further worsening the problem.  

 

PCOS is a disorder concerning the endocrine system. In those affected by PCOS—20% of all Indian women—the body produces a higher level of androgen (male hormone).  

 

This hampers egg development in the ovaries as well as their release and can result in the formation of cysts.  

 

Along with genetics, insulin-resistance and inflammation in the body are considered to be causes for PCOS.  

 

 When it comes to the PCOD vs PCOS debate, the latter is considered to be far more serious and long-lasting by medical experts as it is a metabolic disorder. PCOD is deemed temporary and treatable. Both, however, can contribute to fertility problems. 

PCOD vs PCOS symptoms

PCOD symptoms

  • Hair thinning 
  • Severe obesity 
  • Heavy bleeding when periods do occur 
  • Menstrual irregularity: oligomenorrhea (less than 9 menstrual periods in a year) and amenorrhea (absence of menstrual periods for 3 or more months, successively)

PCOS symptoms

  • Headaches 
  • Weight gain 
  • Male pattern baldness 
  • Irregular periods, which triggers heavy bleeding when periods do occur 

Additional Read: Experiencing PCOS hair loss? All you need to know

Common symptoms

  • Acne  
  • Darkness of skin where the skin creases, such as the neck, armpits and groin 
  • Hirsutism, i.e., excessive hair growth on the face and body 

PCOD vs PCOS: How these common women’s conditions differ

While, PCOD vs PCOS symptoms are more or less the same. However, their intensity varies.

Impact of diet and exercise  

While PCOD and PCOS vary in several aspects, one of the similarities is that they both benefit from a good diet and exercise. This is because both help manage obesity. 

Additional Read: PCOD Diet: foods to eat and foods to avoid

While you may have some of the symptoms of PCOD or PCOS, don’t self-diagnose or self-medicate. The best way forward is to approach a specialist doctor who will diagnose you after checking for cysts, high androgen levels and a pelvic exam.

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