Dissecting Androgen excess and metabolic dysfunction - an Integrated SYstems approach to PolyCystic Ovary Syndrome (DAISY-PCOS)


  • Prof Wiebke Arlt

    University of Birmingham, United Kingdom

Project summary

Typically diagnosed in early adulthood, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) disproportionally affects South-Asian women, who often experience additional healthcare barriers. Therefore, our project will build visible PCOS leadership in Birmingham's large South-Asian and university/college communities, aiming to reduce health inequality. Novel training will equip 24 women with relevant skills/confidence to become experts in their own condition and advocate others alongside researchers on the nature of PCOS as a lifelong metabolic disease, thereby reducing the 'reproductive disorder' stigma.

Charity 'Cysters' will support our South-Asian recruitment and connect us to existing Youth Ambassadors who promote women's health/wellbeing. Together we will better understand PCOS community needs whilst mitigating cultural/youth barriers to co-craft culturally and contemporary-relevant public engagement (PE) that speaks to target audiences (South-Asians - including underserved/youth; university/college students).

Twelve 'Share' events will promote two-way exchange in community settings (e.g. temples, Fresher events). 'Pop-Ups' will tour festivals targeting South-Asians and/or young people, creatively exhibiting PCOS lived experience to enhance public awareness and empathy. Two city-centre 'Showcases' during the PCOS Awareness Month will capitalize on media interest, engaging a wider Birmingham demographic through unveiling provocative public artwork created via crowdsourced contributions from women motivated to share personal PCOS stories. Active community-level advocacy will reduce health inequality longer-term, providing a leadership template for other health conditions. Robust evaluation will directly shape our future PE ambitions, with project report and learning shared online and at key events e.g. Engage Conference.