Polycystic ovary syndrome or disorder is one of the most common disorders I see in my practice. PCOS is an extremely common disorder, affecting approximately 10% of all women and is the leading cause of infertility in women. Most women realize that something is wrong, they are just not sure what. The symptoms tend to creep up on them and PCOS is not usually tested for until the woman is severely overweight, diabetic or is having issues with infertility. Often lab testing is completed once and never tested again but the disorder tends to progress as time goes on.
Some of the more commonly experienced signs and symptoms include:
There are varying degrees of PCOS symptoms and often the patients I see have some of these symptoms but may not have enough to be formally diagnosed. This can be very confusing for women. Although the name implies that the ovaries must have cysts in order to be diagnosed, this is not true. In fact, polycystic ovary syndrome is formally diagnosed if a woman has at least 2 of the following:
Most commonly conventional medical treatments include: diabetic drugs, birth control pills and fertility treatments. Naturopathic medicine has some great avenues in treating PCOS by working with the hormonal imbalance. Of course, naturopathic treatments are individualized to each case but general goals include:
If you are in the Kelowna area and wish to see a naturopathic doctor about your PCOS symptoms, please contact Dr. Katie Coombs, ND at The Core Centre of Health.
If you are living on Earth today you have heavy metals in your tissues.
Sounds scary, right? Well not really. We all have the ability to process and eliminate a reasonable amount of these metals and have been doing this for as long as humans have existed. What seems to be the problem in some people is a combination of higher than normal burden of these metals in conjunction with other toxic substances. Also, weakened processes in the liver and kidneys can contribute to higher than normal storage of these toxic substances.
Testing for heavy metal burden is a complex process. It involves looking at both an unprovoked urine sample and a chelation provoked urine sample. The unprovoked sample shows your current exposure while the provoked sample gives us an idea what is being stored in your tissues. By using chelating agents we can pull toxic metals from tissues such as the bone, fat and brain to show the storage of these metals. When testing for heavy metal burden in the body, we are looking for a level that would be associated with your symptoms, not necessarily just low levels that the majority of the population would have in their bodies.
Often it can be difficult to pinpoint where the exposure occurred because it may have happened many years ago or had been a low level exposure that occurred over many years. Some of the most common sources of exposure are:
Toxic metals can impact a number of systems within the body including: gastrointestinal, respiratory, cardiovascular, central nervous system, renal and hepatic systems. In addition, many health issues can be associated with elevated toxic metals including: cancers, skin conditions, neurological conditions and general feelings of fatigue and pain sensitivity. Often the burden can also cause patients to become more sensitive to other toxic substances such as perfumes, herbicides and pesticides.
Treatment of heavy metal toxicity involves chelation therapy as well as supportive nutrient therapies designed to prevent side effects associated with treatment. Most side effects can be managed by supporting the mineral depletion associated with chelation therapy and optimizing liver and kidney function.
Please contact the clinic if you’d like to further investigate heavy metal toxicity as a cause of your health issues. Ensure you specify you’d like to see Dr. Coombs for investigation into heavy metals: