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Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a common condition that affects how a woman’s ovaries work.
The three main features of the condition are:
You will usually be diagnosed with PCOS if you have at least two of these features.
Polycystic ovaries contain a large number of harmless cysts up to 8mm in size. The cysts are under-developed sacs in which eggs develop. Often in PCOS, these sacs are unable to release an egg, meaning ovulation doesn't take place.
Signs and symptoms
Symptoms of PCOS usually become apparent during your late teens or early twenties. They can include:
Polycystic ovary syndrome is associated with an increased risk of problems in later life, such as type 2 diabetes and high cholesterol levels.