The Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is the most common endocrine disorder in women of reproductive age with complex but interesting reproductive and metabolic ramifications. The effects of various endocrine-hormonal dysfunctions in psychiatry are well known and have been targeted by scientific study for quite some time. During the past few years, psychiatric research has shifted its interest to the cellular level. Steroids that originate in the periphery (e.g. ovaries), as well as those synthesized by the central nervous system (neurosteroids), have neuroplastic effects and interfere with almost all known neurotransmitter systems. Therefore steroid de-regulation that is caused by the PCOS is related to psychiatric symptomatology on both a pathophysiological and a clinical level. In medical psychiatric practice, PCOS is related to many disorders: bipolar disorder and its treatment, epilepsy, depression, cognitive disorders, sleep disorders, eating disorders, and somatoform disorders. On a psychological level, women suffering from PCOS may display depressive symptoms, anxiety, body image dissatisfaction, diminished sexual interest, and compromised quality of life. Therefore, we believe that it is useful for the clinical psychiatrist to keep in mind the psychiatric and the psychological aspects of PCOS, and their impact on patient diagnosis, course and treatment.

Key words: Polycystic ovary syndrome, Psychoendocrinology, Psychiatry, reproductive steroids, review.

H. Mourikis, J. Zervas (page 21) - Full article (Greek)