Lunch & Learn Webinar

What PCOS is and how it relates to infertility with Dr. Rachel Corradetti-Sargeant, ND

Guest Speaker:
Dr. Rachel Corradetti-Sargeant, ND

Dr. Christina De Avila, ND CDE

Webinar Date and Time:
19/10/2022 12:00 pm

Dr. Rachel is a fertility-focused naturopathic doctor who works with ‘Conceive Health’ at Niagara, Stoney Creek, Ontario.

‘Conceive Health’ has an integrated model of medical doctors, reproductive endocrinologists, nurses, diagnostic settings, psycho-monitoring, and advanced reproductive techniques like IVF to help people in their fertility journey.

Q. What is PCOS?

A. Interestingly, with PCOS, the medical presentation of cysts may not be the same as the cysts present on your ovaries. In some cases, you may not have cysts at all for you to be diagnosed with PCOS.

The diagnostic criteria commonly followed is the Rotterdam Criteria which consists of the following:

  1. PCO (polycystic) appearance of the ovaries.
  2. Elevated androgens – excessive male-pattern hormones causing clinical symptoms like excessive body hair and facial hair, male-pattern hair loss, and acne. The other sign can be seen in elevated levels of androgens in blood work.
  3. Anovulation – Not getting to an ovulatory point in a cycle, irregular periods, or skipped periods.

One must have two out of three of these criteria to be diagnosed with PCOS.

Other signs and symptoms in patients include: being overweight, low insulin sensitivity, darkening of the skin, and skin tags.

Q. PCOS and its impact on fertility – Can you conceive with PCOS?

A. 80% of ovulatory infertility cases are due to PCOS. A majority of patients who go to fertility clinics have PCOS, and have had successful pregnancies. So, yes, you can conceive with PCOS, often without going through a medicated cycle. To assist with conception, fertility clinics often use medication to help you become more insulin-sensitive and help with follicle development and ovulation.

Q. What lifestyle modifications can one make for the management of PCOS?

A. Lifestyle modifications can significantly help a PCOS patient. Some examples: Increase fibre and protein intake in your diet. Exercise to manage insulin resistance and reduce weight. Stress less and sleep well as both stress and sleep impact insulin sensitivity, cell metabolism and hormones. Add supplements to your diet and ensure you’re using the right type and amount of product for a suitable duration. Supplements like Myo-inositol, berberine, NAC, white peony, liquorice root, and spearmint are some recommended supplements. Speak with your healthcare provider to understand if and how you should use these supplements.

Q. What can one do if they think they have PCOS?

A. Track your cycles, cervical mucus, and body temperature with an app like ‘Kindara’. Having data is essential to start seeing change once you start your treatment. If you think you have PCOS, get in touch with your healthcare provider and start with blood work and testing. You can also go to a fertility-focused MD to manage PCOS.

Q. Where does a fertility clinic fit in?

A. Going to a clinic with an integrated model that focuses on the various aspects of your health is essential. A lot of PCOS-related conditions are lifestyle conditions and need long-term management. The process should not just focus on conception but also on managing metabolic and hormonal conditions during and post-pregnancy. It can put one at a higher risk of gestational diabetes and placental development issues if not managed well.

Q. What is the role of the thyroid in PCOS?

A. PCOS is multifaceted – affecting hormones, metabolism, and other aspects of health. Certain elements of thyroid dysfunction can mimic certain components of PCOS. Insulin resistance present with PCOS can increase the risk of elevated thyroid antibodies. A good fertility clinic will help you manage a thyroid condition with PCOS. It’s not just the sex hormones that affect PCOS; other hormones, too, are at play.

About Dr. Rachel

Dr. Corradetti-Sargeant was destined for a career in Naturopathic Medicine – she’s part total science nerd and part no-holds-barred health nut. During her undergraduate studies in Kinesiology at the University of Western Ontario, she learned that conceiving would likely be a struggle. She worked with a naturopathic doctor to overcome these issues and it became clear to her that becoming a naturopathic doctor was her destiny.

She studied at the National College of Natural Medicine in Portland, Oregon and the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine in Toronto, Ontario. She is licensed through the College of Naturopaths of Ontario, and is a professional member of the Canadian and Ontario Associations of Naturopathic Doctors, as well as the Endocrinology Association of Naturopathic Physicians. She is also licensed to prescribe a small schedule of pharmaceuticals granted to naturopathic doctors, and has completed training in intravenous therapy.

She treats her patients with personalized, functional, and integrative medicine. With special interests in fertility, she is passionate about empowering her patients to make healthy changes that help them conceive.

When Dr. Corradetti-Sargeant is not seeing patients, she’s running triathlons, contributing to magazine articles (look for her in Clean Eating and Elle magazines), or making a giant mess in the kitchen whipping up the latest healthy desserts!

Dr. Christina De Avila, ND CDE

About Our Host

Dr. Christina De Avila, ND CDE

Dr. Christina De Avila, ND CDE is a licensed naturopathic doctor by the College of Naturopaths of Ontario (CONO) with the additional designation of Certified Diabetes Educator. She works one-on-one with patients to create individualized treatment plans that address the underlying cause to improve overall health… About Christina De Avila