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ADHD in Women


Hi all. This is my first post, so I feel like I ought to give a super quick obligatory background before posing my question:

1. I have an nine-year-old son with severe ADHD and ODD.
2. Upon worsening of ODD I realized that my parenting has been disruptive as fudge because I, too, have ADHD for which I am soon being evaluated.
3. Cue 10,000 light bulbs turning on

So, I’m here. After obsessively researching all weekend and learning more about ADHD, I’m wondering if anyone can point me in the direction of more information regarding how it interacts with PCOS, even anecdotally. My understanding is that both affect the endocrine system, and both affect glucose metabolization. Further, if stimulant medications improve ADHD through increasing dopamine and norepinephrine, and by possibly normalizing androgen through their affect on the hypothalamus pituitary adrenal (, could these same medications produce a therapeutic effect for women who also have PCOS? And if, as I mentioned, both PCOS and ADHD affect one’s endocrine system and glucose, could it be that each disorder feeds into the other, thereby potentially worsening both?

Might it not it behoove psychs to request blood tests to check a woman’s hormone levels (testosterone, androgen, thyroid hormones) to better treat her? I wish there were more studies being done on women’s issues and ADHD.


This question really digs deep—I certainly don’t know the answers. If you can visit a psychopharmacologist, that may be ideal to get the insights you’re looking for.

ADDconnect Moderator, Author & Mentor on Parenting ADHD, Mom to teen w/ ADHD, LDs, and autism

Posted by adhdmomma on Feb 20, 2017 at 2:32pm

I have ADD and was very fertile when I was in my child baring years so I don’t think there is a connection. I know several men in my extended family who have add/ADHD and all had no problem in their fertility. I don’t think there is a connection with fertility and ADHD/add. I do want to say and this is my opinion only, I would not take any meds while trying to conceive

Posted by Pink ginger on Feb 20, 2017 at 5:49pm

I think your question is extremely pertinent regarding women with ADHD. I don’t know whether or not I have PCOS. I have had at least one cyst diagnosed a few years ago. I was basically told that since I was on BC pills, I should be fine, not to worry about it. It turns out, BC pills were trying to kill me with a slow onset depressive issue that I have just recently recognized and have had to discontinue taking BC pills entirely. I don’t know what my hormone levels are. I don’t know whether there is a deeper underlying issue with some kind of hormonal imbalance, endocrine disorder, or anything else so far.

The only thing that I can say is that my first week off the BC pills, my head was clearer than it had been since the first week I took Adderall. There seems to be some kind of interaction between BC pills and Adderall in me, but I don’t know whether that holds true for anyone else. It’s certainly something that should be researched, whatever the case may be.

Posted by frankiebgoode on Mar 02, 2017 at 9:08pm

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