A diagnosis of PCOS can usually be made if other rare causes of the same symptoms have been ruled out and you meet at least 2 of the following 3 criteria:
- you have irregular periods or infrequent periods – this indicates that your ovaries do not regularly release eggs (ovulate)
- blood tests showing you have high levels of "male hormones", such as testosterone (or sometimes just the signs of excess male hormones, even if the blood test is normal)
- scans showing you have polycystic ovaries
As only 2 of these need to be present to diagnose PCOS, you will not necessarily need to have an ultrasound scan before the condition can be confirmed.
Referral to a specialist
If you're diagnosed with PCOS, you may be treated by your GP or referred to a specialist, either a gynaecologist (a specialist in treating conditions of the female reproductive system) or an endocrinologist (a specialist in treating hormone problems).
Your GP or specialist will discuss with you the best way to manage your symptoms. They'll recommend lifestyle changes and start you on any necessary medicine.
Depending on factors like your age and weight, you may be offered annual checks of your blood pressure and screening for diabetes if you're diagnosed with PCOS.