Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a metabolic disorder with reproductive consequences. Hence, the synergy of the dual maternal challenges of difficulties with conception, set on a background of metabolic disorder and inflammation, understandably leads to increased obstetric risk for the woman. Furthermore, she is more likely than her peers to require assistance with conception, either through induction of ovulation with the attendant risk of a multiple gestation, or in vitro fertilization (IVF) with its recognized increased obstetric risk for woman and her child. The increased obstetric risk for a woman with PCOS is manifested with an increased rate of miscarriage, gestational diabetes, hypertensive disorder and premature delivery. These obstetric complications are due to impairment of placental function, systemic inflammation and metabolic disorder and are markers for the woman herself of her predisposition to cardiometabolic disorder in later life. Consequently, it is inevitable that this environment may induce changes in the fetus during pregnancy, leading to an intergenerational risk from maternal PCOS.
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