One out of every five women will develop a disorder called polycystic ovarian syndrome during their lifetimes, according to the Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome Awareness Association. Most doctors think PCOS is a result of both environmental and genetic factors, but there is not yet a consensus among medical professionals and researchers as to the exact causes. Women in Kentucky who believe they may be suffering from PCOS should consult a medical professional for an examination.

One problem with PCOS is that it can manifest a large number of different symptoms. A panel of medical experts submitted a petition to the National Institutes of Health in 2013 to have the name of the condition changed in an effort to prevent misdiagnoses. Generally speaking, the disorder is a hormonal imbalance that impacts insulin, progesterone and androgens. PCOS is the number one cause of infertility among women; it often prevents women from ovulating. It can also manifest by causing mood swings, acne, excess hair or weight gain.

Any of these symptoms can have a negative impact on a woman’s sense of well-being, which is why proper diagnosis of the condition is so important. Doctors sometimes misdiagnose patients with PCOS based on the symptom of pelvic pain. If it is not properly treated, PCOS may lead to diabetes, high cholesterol, hypertension or heart disease. There is still no cure for PCOS, but researchers and doctors have come closer to determining its cause.

People who are misdiagnosed during visits to doctor’s offices or hospitals often suffer further harm as a result of the misdiagnosis. In such cases, an attorney who handles medical malpractice cases might be able to help by examining the facts of the case and interviewing parties with knowledge to build a case for trial. An attorney might be able to secure a monetary settlement out of court or file a lawsuit to pursue damages.