When singer Chrisette Michele was featured in EBONY’s “Body Brigade” issue in March, she and her fellow full-figured bombshells dished intimate details of their lives. Amid the candid discussion was a moment of education, as the ladies were asked whether they’ve dealt with weight-related illnesses.
Michele revealed that she has been living with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). ”It’s definitely something I have to stay on top of,” she said.
The fact is PCOS is prevalent. Between 5% and 10% of women of reproductive age (18–44) are affected, and as many as 5 million women in the U.S. may suffer from it. According to the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, PCOS may affect girls as young as 11 who haven’t even had their first period.
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Shannon M. Clark, MD, MMS is a double board certified ObGyn and Maternal-Fetal Medicine Specialist, and founder of Babies After 35. In her roles as a clinician, educator and researcher at UTMB-Galveston, she focuses on the care of people with maternal and/or fetal complications of pregnancy. Dr. Clark has taken a special interest in pregnancy after the age of 35, which according to age alone, is considered a high-risk pregnancy. In her role as a physician caring for high-risk pregnancies, she has counseled and treated hundreds of women over the years in her very own situation, and has found a whole new respect for the challenges and complications a woman may experience when trying to have a baby later in life.
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