Laser Hair Removal & PCOD: All you need to know about Laser Hair Removal in PCOD/PCOS
What is PCOD?
Polycystic Ovarian Disease (PCOD) is a hormonal issue that affects women during their childbearing years (ages 15 to 44). Poly- means many, cyst is a fluid type formation in the ovaries that causes irregularity in the hormones and the disease further leads to various bodily, skin and hair disorders. Women suffering from PCOD have multiple small cysts built up in their ovaries. These cysts take place when there are persistent disruptions in a normal menstrual cycle. The ovary gets expanded in size; and forms enormous amounts of hormones called androgen and estrogen. This excess in hormone production, together with the absence of ovulation, may even cause infertility.
Other names for PCOD are Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) or less commonly the Stein-Leventhal syndrome.
The ailment dealing with hormonal irregularity, Polycystic Ovarian Disease (PCOD) has become a great matter of concern among several women today. An estimated of 2.2 and 26.7 % of females in this age group have PCOD. What is more scornful about the situation is that many women who have PCOD/PCOS do not even know it. In one study conducted, it was revealed about 70 % of females with PCOD hadn’t been diagnosed and were unaware of the PCOD attack on them.
The ovaries disperse eggs to be fertilized by a man’s sperm. The process of releasing of an egg that occurs each month is called ovulation. As mentioned, PCOD affects a female’s ovaries, the reproductive organs that produce estrogen and progesterone — hormones that systemize the menstrual cycle turn upside down thus,weakening a women’s competency of conceiving.
Ovulation is controlled by the respective hormones called Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) ovulation. FSH prompts the ovary to produce a follicle which is a fluid-filled sac that contains an egg and then LH stimulates the ovary to release a mature egg. The lack of ovulation alters the production of progesterone, estrogen, FSH, and LH by lowering their levels, whereas levels of androgen are higher than usual. Extra male hormones upsets the monthly period cycle, as an outcome women with PCOD get fewer periods than usual.
Hence, the main features symbolizing PCOD or an array of symptoms that affects the ovaries and ovulation are:
- Cysts build up in the ovaries
- Production of high levels of male hormones (androgen estrogen)
- irregular or skipped menstruation
It is utterly important to get oneself checked for figuring out ,if or if not, you have PCOD/PCOS or other symptoms of hormonal balance that can have a sizeable effect on overall functioning and appearance of a female body.
Diagnosis of PCOD or PCOS
Before learning about the clinical diagnosis of PCOD, note that not all patients with PCOD will have all or any of the discernible symptoms of hormonal imbalance. Sometimes, it requires a proper diagnosis to confirm PCOD that includes a vaginal ultrasound, which exposes to view that both the ovaries are enlarged; the bright central ovarian stroma is increased; and there are numerous small cysts in the ovaries. These cysts are generally assembled taking a shape of a necklace along the rim of the ovary. It is however crucial for the doctor to differentiate polycystic ovaries from multicystic ovaries.
Blood tests also play a critical role for making the diagnosis. Essentially, blood levels of hormones exhibit a high level of LH (luteinising hormone); and a normal FSH level (follicle stimulating hormone) (this is termed as reversal of the LH: FSH ratio, which is usually 1:1); and increased extent of androgens ( a high dehydroepiandrosterone sulphate ( DHEA-S) level).
Symptoms of PCOD
Some females began realizing symptoms around the time of their first period. While others only are able to track down they might have PCOD after they’ve had difficulty getting pregnant or they have seen changes in skin and hair unlooked for.
The most common symptoms or group of symptoms that can indicate of PCOD or PCOs are as follows:-
- Irregular periods: the lack of ovulation obstructs the uterine lining from shedding every month. Some females with PCOD even have fewer than eight periods a year, while some get periods each month but that scantly near to Naught.
- Heavy bleeding: The uterine lining form for an extended period of time, so the periods some females get can be much… Much heavier than usual.
- Weight gain: Women with PCOD are commonly overweight or obese. Up to 80% of women with obesity or fatigue are diagnosed with PCOD.
- Male-pattern baldness: Some women get the horrifying effects of shifting hormones in way of steadily getting bald and hair thinning. Hair on the scalp get so thinner that they fall out and gradually cause wide parting, scanty scalp, patterned baldness.
- Hair growth: While some women lose out on the lovely, desirable locks from the scalp, some suffering with this condition grow hair on their face and body including on their belly, back and chest. This type of Excess hair growth in women is called hirsutism. More than 70 percent of women with PCOD show sign of excessive facial and body hair growth.
- Acne: Higher levels of Male hormones in the body can make the skin oilier than normal , thus causing breakouts on areas like the face, back, upper back chest, and arms.
- Skin Darkening: Dark or black/brown patches of skin can occur in body creases like those on the neck, nape, and underarms, under the breasts, and in the groin.
- Headaches: Imbalanced Hormones can incite headaches in some women.
What if PCOD is not being treated before going for Laser Hair Removal Treatment?
As mentioned, that some women tend to grow excessive facial and body hair when suffering from PCOD. However, there are people unable to realize the actual cause of the condition may be PCOD or hiruitism, and they still pursue the laser hair removal treatment to get the dense forest shredded.
But does the Laser Hair Removal Work on women with PCOD, PCOS stimulated hair growth? Let’s have a look
Does Laser Hair Removal Work for PCOS?
Yes, laser hair removal works for females who have suffered an increase in hair growth because of Polycystic Ovarian Disease (PCOD). Now that you all know PCOD has a hair-raising effect on the body’s natural hormone levels and that enormous hair growth is often a straight outcome of this condition, many cases of PCOD can achieve outstanding outcomes from laser hair removal treatment. Not only an apparent reduction in excessive hair growth on face and body can be achieved quickly from this treatment but can also offer life changing advantages for those whose self-confidence has been smashed to smithereens as an output of this condition.
But understand that you have an undiagnosed hormonal irregularity issue. We assume majority of the women reading this probably has PCOD, but what if you get done the laser hair removal treatment just for all of the hair to return months later? The laser treatments for conditions in PCOD are successful only for a short span of time. For all you know next, your female beard has returned! Or the under belly seems like a grassland. It’s not impossible that you could have an underlying issue causing the huge hair growth that won’t resolve until you get the right treatment plan for it.
For example, diagnosed with idiopathic hirsutism and not on hormonal therapy during laser or first session could not only delay the laser hair reduction results but also call for increased number of top-up sessions. However, if you are undergoing a fix for hormonal imbalance, your recent laser hair removal sessions would last much longer because of hormones now being under control. That said, even Obesity, Diabetes, or Thyroid problems without the correct medications could all lead to laser hair removal being less effective.
Although results from laser for hair removal treatment for many can be thrilling, but still they do need to be maintained on a regular basis to keep up the permanent reduction in hair growth. Top up or follow-up sessions may be needed every 3 to 4 months indefinitely (particularly for facial hair growth). It is all-vital to understand however that though laser will not give a 100% result in permanent reduction/removal of hair growth amongst PCOD patients, hairs will get visibly lighter, finer and much slower to re-grow.
There may be some wondering if lasers are capable of reducing the facial and body hair growth for those suffering with PCOD or hiruitism, then why is it that there needs a regular maintenance or top-up laser treatments.
Why Do I Need So Many Laser Sessions With PCOD/PCOS?
Firstly, since Laser cannot influence internal hormone imbalances within the body and that it works on the dermis, there remain certain limitations as to what it can achieve for PCOD hair growth.
Secondly, With PCOD, hair growth is resilient and resolute. So, being hair growth consistently taking place, it becomes necessary to have regular maintenance sessions to keep the laser’s good work going forward. The advanced medical grade lasers however do the best possible to achieve effective and safe results for women with PCOD.
Once the good-enough reduction/elimination in hair growth has been achieved, (after a number of laser treatments) results will necessitate to be maintained. As everyone’s hormone profile varies, the frequency and time gap of these sessions will depend on the individual. Larger body areas with hair growth may needs less frequent maintenance sessions but you should be prepared for facial hair that will require to be maintained on an 8-12 week cycle.
What can be done to treat PCOD before anyone goes for Laser Hair Removal?
If planning to get done laser treatment for hair removal, it will be quite useful for people suffering with PCOD, other hormonal related problems or hair-inducing issues to take an appropriate treatment plan beforehand for better results and much lesser sessions.
Here is a quick look-up on what you can do to control and curb PCOD before the LHR treatment.
Diet and lifestyle to treat PCOS:
The most common treatment for PCOS generally begins with lifestyle changes like diet, workouts and weight management.
By losing just 7 to 10 % of your body weight can help control your menstrual cycle and dwindle the signs of PCOD. Weight loss can further improve lower insulin, cholesterol levels, risk of diabetes, and heart disease.
Some diets have advantages over others when comparing for PCOD. It is found that low-carbohydrate diets are very favorable for both controlling insulin levels and weight. A low glycemic index (low-GI) diet that receives most carbohydrates from whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, helps improvingly regulate the menstrual cycle than a regular weight loss diet.
A 30-minute of moderate-intensity exercise at least three days a week can help females with PCOD lose weight. Losing weight with a proper workout regime also improves ovulation.
Remember, Exercise gets even more advantageous when combined with a healthy diet, not just for PCOD but in general too. Diet plus exercise aids in shedding more weight than either intrusion alone, and it also lowers your risks for heart disease and diabetes.
Common medical treatments:
Birth control pills and other medicines are useful in regulating the menstrual cycle and treat PCOD symptoms like hair growth and acne outbreaks.
Ingesting progestin and estrogen daily or as prescribed by health care provider can help restore a normal hormonal balance, modulate ovulation, alleviate symptoms like excess hair growth, and protect against endometrial cancer. These hormones come in form of a pill, patch, or vaginal ring.
Clomiphene (Clomid) is a fertility drug that can make women with PCOD get pregnant. Howbeit, the risk for twins and other multiple births get bigger.
Metformin (Fortamet, Glucophage) is a medicine used to treat type-2 diabetes and PCOD by restoring a normal menstrual cycle and improving insulin levels.
Hair removal medicines
Some treatments can help get rid of unwanted hair or stop it from growing. Eflornithine (Vaniqa) gel is a prescription drug that can disrupt hair growth.
If none other treatments work, Surgery may be an option to improve fertility for PCOD patients. Ovarian drilling is an operation that creates tiny holes in the ovary with a laser or thin heated needle to re-attain normal ovulation.