RESEARCH PROJECT - The influence of PCOS on decision making

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RESEARCH PROJECT - The influence of PCOS on decision making

Postby Lutzomyia » Thu May 13, 2010 10:59 am

Dear All,

Please take a few minutes to read this research summary and if you are suitable please follow the link below. Ethical approval has been given by the appropriate committee.

Thank you

Tracy Nevatte - Verity Research Officer

Suspecting that you may have or being diagnosed with PCOS raises many questions about appearance, physical symptoms, fertility, emotional issues, long-term health concerns and what this all means for the choices we make from this point on. Confusion is often made worse by a lack of agreement between different doctors and between doctors and their patients.

I would like as many women as possible, from multiple discussion forums, to complete a short, on-line questionnaire that deals with the ways in which decision-making is approached in all areas of day-to-day life. All members and visitors are welcome to participate, from those that have never posted to those who post regularly. Completing the questionnaire takes around 10 minutes. All identifying details will be changed and respondents are assured of anonymity.

There is no obligation to participate further. The questionnaire will ask whether you are willing to take part in future interviews. It is planned to hold in-depth interviews via email with around 30 women who responded to the questionnaire and who consented to further interview. Individual histories and especially PCOS health and social experiences (including relationships with partners, friends and family, employment issues, fertility issues as well as experiences of medical consultations) will be gathered during follow-up interviews. There will also be opportunity to discuss the role that Verity and the newsgroup have played.

Link to survey:

Password: PCOS
* Unless otherwise stated, my views do not represent the official views, position and standing of Verity
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RESEARCH PROJECT - The influence of PCOS on decision making

Postby PamH » Tue Dec 07, 2010 7:02 pm

This research project is ongoing and I am still looking for women to take part.

If you would like to be involved simply follow the link on the original message below.

If you have already completed the questionnaire and are willing to take part in follow-up interviews, please email me at

I would like to thank all the women who have generously donated their time so far.

The research carried out thus far suggests that emotions play an important role in the practice of decision-making. In addition to the general 'moodiness' associated with PCOS hormonal and endocrinological imbalances, there can be a number of other issues that have an emotional impact. The symptoms themselves, especially problems with weight loss or control and excess hair and/or hair loss, impact on self-image and relationships with others. As well as being a source of great sadness, reduced fertility and problems conceiving can make future planning especially problematic. Chronic stress and uncertainty can make the practice of decision-making very difficult indeed which not only results in the woman feeling bad but reduces effectiveness in finding a way out of, or around, the situation. In effect, women become trapped in a negative cycle and experience great difficulty in extricating themselves - despite the huge amount of mental and emotional energy they bring to the task.

The Verity message board can be of assistance in finding a way out of this impasse in numerous ways. For example, whilst many women benefit from supportive relationships with friends and family, the support provided by the message board is qualitatively different in that other women are familiar with all the problems a woman is likely to encounter and can offer practical advice. The public posting of messages means that this benefit is shared by those who rarely or never post or are simply visiting the site. The national focus means that women are able to compare their own experiences of seeking medical help with that of others and so are less likely to be, or remain, 'fobbed off'. In addition to providing a practical guide of 'how to' get help, Verity is an extremely useful source of up-to-date information which can be very important to women who are simply diagnosed but are given little or no information by their doctors.
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