Polycystic ovaries contain a large number of fluid-filled sacs each one containing an immature egg. The eggs never mature enough to trigger ovulation. The exact cause of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome is unknown but it is thought to be caused by a hormone imbalance, resulting in women with PCOS having elevated levels of LH throughout their cycle.
Women with polycystic ovarian syndrome often don’t ovulate, or at least not regularly and have irregular or infrequent periods. If you are not ovulating then the egg is not released from the ovary to pass into the Fallopian tube in order to be fertilized and implant in the uterus.
Using an ovulation test to help pinpoint fertile times may not give you reliable results if you have polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). If you have PCOS, you may have a constant high level of Luteinizing hormone or multiple Luteinizing hormone surges. The results can falsely reflect whether or not you have ovulated.
To determine if you have PCOS, your doctor will check that you have at least 2 of these 3 symptoms:
1) Irregular periods or no periods, caused from lack of ovulation.
2) Higher than normal levels of male hormones that may result in excess hair on the face and body, acne, or thinning scalp hair.
3) Multiple small cysts on the ovaries. Just having ovarian cysts isn’t enough for a diagnosis. Lots of women without PCOS have cysts on their ovaries and lots of women with PCOS don’t have cysts.