Insemination / Hormone stimulation / Relevant hormones

Relevant hormones

If you have an abnormal hormone level, you may well have an irregular, short or long menstrual cycle. This may also make it difficult to work out when you are ovulating using ovulation tests.

Your hormone levels can be assessed with blood tests: AMH (anti-Müllerian Hormone), prolactin, FSH (follicle-stimulating hormone), LH (luteinising hormone) oestradiol and TSH. Your FSH and LH levels may able to tell us possible reasons why you have not managed to become pregnant, if that is the case. The FSH and LH levels are also useful in planning the type of hormone treatment you should have and when deciding the dosage of the individual hormone preparations for you. Blood tests should be done on Day 2-3 of your cycle.

At StorkKlinik we also want to know the results of your TSH (thyroid-stimulating hormone) and prolactin levels. In some cases we also recommend having your androgen status including your testosterone (the male sex hormone) levels checked, and in rare cases your insulin and C-peptide levels. Your test results will often deviate from the normal reference range if you suffer from irregular periods and anovulation, for example. The blood tests can be done by your own doctor or gynaecologist – or here in the clinic. When we use hormone treatment, we aim to increase your chances of becoming – and remaining – pregnant. Hormone treatment works by enhancing, inhibiting or replacing your natural hormones. Most of the main sex hormones are formed in the pituitary gland in the brain, from where the hormones are transported in the blood to their destination in the body. The hormones are interdependent, and for some hormones an increase in one hormone results in a decrease in another.

If you are not ovulating, treatment with Clomifene® tablets (which stimulate the pituitary gland to produce more natural FSH) or Tamoxifen® tablets (which stimulate the growth of follicles in your ovaries) is enough for some women to stimulate good egg development, which then leads to ovulation. Other women may need FSH injections (Menopur®, Gonal-F®, Puregon® or Bemfola).

These are always supplemented with an ovulation injection (Ovitrelle®) to ensure ovulation at the same time as insemination.

In the case of a slightly-reduced sperm count, mild endometriosis or unexplained infertility, hormone-stimulated insemination treatment will often be given. Clomifene® tablets, Tamoxifen® tablets or FSH injections are similarly used here to encourage good egg development, and this is always followed up with an ovulation injection.

AMH, Anti-Müllerian Hormone  provides an indication of the size of your egg reserve

TSH, thyroid-stimulating hormone – a hormone which controls the thyroid gland’s production and release of the hormones thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3), which have a bearing on your chances of becoming pregnant, reduce your risk of miscarrying, reduce complications during the pregnancy and probably reduce a future baby’s risk of having a low IQ

GnRH, gonadotropin-releasing hormone – causes the release of FSH and LH in the pituitary gland

FSH, follicle-stimulating hormone – is produced in the pituitary gland and stimulates the growth of the follicles, in which the eggs ripen. Also stimulates sperm production in the male

LH, luteinising hormone – is produced in the pituitary gland and causes ovulation. LH also occurs in men, where it activates the production of the male sex hormone testosterone, which must be present in the body for sperm to be produced, among other things

Prolactin – is produced in the pituitary gland and interacts with the breasts and ovaries. Prolactin causes breast growth during pregnancy and stimulates milk production after birth. Excess prolactin levels can inhibit ovulation

Oestradiol – is produced in the ovaries. During a menstrual cycle, oestradiol causes growth of the endometrium. An elevated oestradiol level mid-cycle causes an increase in LH, which triggers ovulation

Progesterone – together with oestradiol helps to prepare the endometrium to receive the fertilised egg. During pregnancy, progesterone supports the endometrium so that it is not shed

Androgens – are produced in the ovaries and stimulate hair growth and sex drive. Overproduction of androgens inhibits ovulation

HCG, human chorionic gonadotropin  is produced in the placenta and helps to maintain the corpus luteum of the ovary to continue producing progesterone. It is this hormone that is measured when confirming pregnancy with a urine or blood test

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Stork IVF Klinik | St. Kongensgade 40 H, 1. sal | DK-1264 Copenhagen K
Tel. +45 3257 3316 | Fax +45 3257 3346 | info@storkklinik.dk | CVR. No. 33 03 49 11

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