OB/GYN or Endocrinologist?

  • I've suspected that I have PCOS for several years now, and this has been agreed with by several RNs that I know. But please don't get me wrong, I don't claim to have it, I wouldn't do that unless I was professionally diagnosed.

    In short, I've always had male-pattern hair growth on my face since a few years after hitting puberty (I'm 22 now). I have the thinning hair, darkened skin, skin tags, along with other things as well. I also have always suffered from irregular periods, sometimes going several months without one. But after I lost my first 50lbs or so, I started having extremely regular periods (I usually know down to the hour when it's going to start). Along with the regular periods, though, came horrible pains around the time I suppose I'm ovulating. Not just a small discomfort, I'm talking major, I'm going to die pain in my lower right side. (pelvic area?)

    Around the time the horrible pains started, I began having extreme difficulty losing weight. I know there are tons of things that can affect that, so I'm not even going to try to pinpoint the cause.

    Last year, I went to an OB/GYN for the first time to ask about PCOS and try to find out if I have it. The doctor wouldn't even consider that I had cysts, she said since I had probably never ovulated before from being so overweight, that it was just normal pain I was feeling. I left with birth control (the kind that I later found out would make my hair problem worse) and nothing else. I quit the BC after several months of either missing or very, very long periods. I haven't went back after the doctor wouldn't even bother to call me back after multiple voicemail messages.

    My question is this: Do I need to see an OB/GYN first, or do I go directly to an endocrinologist? I can try to find another OB/GYN if necessary, I'm just not really sure what to do at the moment.
  • I know my regular practitioner had to refer me to an endocrinologist, I couldn't just go but if you can then yes go to an endocrinologist!
  • No need to see an Ob/Gyn
  • Most insurance companies will require a referral to see a specialist, but check with yours to see if this is the case.

    I would suggest getting a better OB/GYN. PCOS can be diagnosed with a simple series of blood tests, so there's no reason they should say no if you request them. You can always know for sure with an ultrasound of the ovaries to look for cysts, which is a quick procedure I got at my obgyn.
  • Make sure you find a REPRODUCTIVE endocrinologist... not all endos are the same. Reproductive endos work with women and usually know PCOS inside and out!
  • Quote: Make sure you find a REPRODUCTIVE endocrinologist... not all endos are the same. Reproductive endos work with women and usually know PCOS inside and out!
    I second this. There are some obgyns out there that are well-versed in pcos, but in my experience they are difficult to find. It took me YEARS to find an obgyn who could treat me effectively. If you can get a referral to a reproductive endo, that would be the way to go.
  • That OB/GYN you saw was wrong. There are some OB/GYNs who are very knowledgable about PCOS and some who aren't. You might see if there is a local group of women online or on Facebook that have PCOS and maybe they can recommend a great local doctor for you to see. Keep coming here too though
  • I would definitely recommend a Reproductive Endocrinologist. Like other posters have said, they know PCOS inside and out. Of course an OB and other Endocrinologists could diagnose it, but IMO if you want to skip potentially running across another doc like the one you already have, see an RE. It was the best decision I had ever made in regards to my PCOS.
  • I'm so frustrated with this whole thing, I'm almost in tears now.

    I called another area OB/GYN to try and make an appointment. I told them that I wanted to get examined and tested for PCOS. First, the person on the phone had no clue what PCOS was, and then after transferring me twice, some very snippy woman (nurse/doctor's aide?) got on the line and told me that they didn't test for that at an OB/GYN, that whoever had informed me that they did was very wrong, and that I would be wasting my time.

    I haven't called an Endo yet, because the closest one is about 2 hours away, and I can't handle another rude person on the phone. It's just so frustrating because it's like there's nothing I can do to fix this and I'll have to be like this forever.