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Gynaecological Endocrinology

Gynaecological endocrinology is the specialism within gynaecology which covers hormonal imbalance. Hormones are at the heart of a woman’s reproductive system, and regulate everything from menstruation and fertility to menopause and libido, which is why any problems with your hormones can have a big impact on your ability to have children. If you suffer from unusually short or long periods, or don’t have periods at all (a condition known as amenorrhea), we recommend that you visit Dr Talha Shawaf at the Harley Street Reproductive Medicine Clinic for an in-depth consultation to assess your reproductive health. This will enable Dr Shawaf to diagnose any hormone imbalances which could be the potential cause of problems with your periods or the source of your infertility.

Around a quarter of cases of female infertility can be linked to problems with ovulation. Dr Talha Shawaf has treated a wide variety of women who have suffered from disturbances in their menstrual cycle or issues with ovarian function, and can tailor a treatment to suit your individual needs.

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)

The name of this condition has finally been challenged (National Institute of Health 2013). The name suggests that the ovary has been inflicted with cysts, leading to anxiety in women who are affected by the condition. This is far from the truth, as there are in fact no cysts. The small fluid filled areas seen represent follicles (egg sacs) that have not matured, or which have not progressed on the normal pathway because of a hormonal imbalance that may not only affect the ovary but also other elements of the endocrine system such as the production of Insulin.

Enlarged polycystic ovary
The polycystic ovary may become enlarged with many small cysts

Ultrasound of a polycystic ovary
Ultrasound picture of a polycystic ovary

Polycystic ovary syndrome, or PCOS, is one of the leading causes of subfertility in women, and sufferers typically present the following symptoms;

  • Irregular menstrual cycles
  • Excess hair growth on the body and face
  • Weight gain (particularly at the waist)
  • Fertility problems

Obesity is common in women with PCOS, and as this is a contributor to infertility, weight loss is usually recommended alongside medication to restore ovulation. PCOS affects 5-10% of women, and at Harley Street Reproductive Medicine, Dr Talha Shawaf has extensive experience of treating this common hormonal disorder. Women will be advised on investigations and therapy depending on the many presentations of these conditions in addition to those with fertility problems.

Abnormal Uterine Bleeding

Abnormal uterine bleeding is any bleeding which occurs between your menstrual periods, and is a common problem in women of reproductive age. Abnormal bleeding is more of a concern in postmenopausal women, so if you have already experienced the menopause and are bleeding, you should seek urgent medical care.

There are a number of causes of abnormal uterine bleeding, which can be established during a consultation with Dr Shawaf. During your appointment, we will discuss your medical history and any potential contributing factors, followed by a detailed physical examination. We can use a number of diagnostic techniques to determine the cause of the bleeding, but whatever the cause, the condition can usually be managed with medication or minor surgery. There are a range of treatments available, and we will advise as to the most suitable treatment for your individual circumstances and health.

If you believe that you may be suffering from PCOS or you are bleeding between your menstrual periods, we recommend that you book an appointment at our clinic to receive the professional advice of a fertility specialist, who will be able to recommend the best course of treatment for your particular condition. You can rest assured that Dr Shawaf and our experienced team have the knowledge and expertise required to help, so contact us today on 020 3837 3855, or complete our online enquiry form to arrange a consultation.

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