Ovarian Reserve Testing Assesses Your Future Fertility
The health and quantity of a woman’s eggs has a significant impact on her fertility. Dr. James Douglas conducts ovarian reserve testing as one more important tool to help predict a woman’s reproductive potential.
What is Ovarian Reserve?
Ovarian reserve is used to describe a woman’s current egg supply. When a female is born, she is born with all the eggs that she will have for the rest of her life. As she ages, the supply of eggs in her ovaries will decline. Not all women’s ovaries age at the same pace, so age alone will not predict the number of eggs remaining (or ovarian reserve), nor can age alone predict the quality of a woman’s available eggs. To help determine the health and quality of the eggs, fertility specialists like Dr. Douglas conduct ovarian reserve testing.
Ovarian Reserve Testing Terminology
In order to understand the types of ovarian reserve testing, you need to understand the terminology.
Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) – this hormone is produced by women’s pituitary glands. FSH stimulates the growth of follicles (eggs) within the ovary.
Antral Follicle Count – a count of the number of active follicles forming in a woman’s ovaries in any given month
Anti Mullerian Hormone (AMH) – Small, primordial, growing follicles in the ovaries produce AMH. Levels of AMH can be used to help indicate ovarian reserve.
Types of Ovarian Reserve Testing
One or more fertility tests may be used to help determine ovarian reserve.
FSH Testing – Also called the Day 3 FSH, this is a blood test where, usually, FSH levels are checked on day 2, 3, or 4 of the patient’s menstrual cycle. This level helps determine the patient’s ovarian reserve.
AMH Testing – This blood test measures the levels of AMH and can be performed at any time during the menstrual cycle.
Antral Follicle Count – Dr. Douglas uses a transvaginal ultrasound in the early part of a woman’s menstrual cycle, which allows him to see the number of follicles (or egg sacs) developing.
The clomiphene citrate challenge test is another type of ovarian reserve testing that measures FSH on day 3 of the menstrual cycle. A fertility doctor administers clomiphene citrate, and FSH levels are measured again on day 10 of the cycle. IVF Plano no longer uses this test to measure ovarian reserve.
Is Ovarian Reserve Testing Right for You?
Each woman is different, and her ovaries and number of eggs she currently has available and the quality of those eggs is unique. Ovarian reserve testing is a valuable tool that helps Dr. Douglas create a plan to help resolve infertility issues. Dr. Douglas often uses ovarian reserve testing for patients who are 35 or older, as well as for patients who have shown signs of ovulatory dysfunction or ovarian failure.
Contact our fertility clinic to schedule a new patient consultation to discuss ovarian reserve testing and other fertility testing options. Dr. Douglas has served women in the Dallas, Plano and Frisco areas for more than two decades. He will diagnose your problem and develop a pregnancy plan of action.