Taking Progesterone is Not the Solution to Your Fertility

Progesterone Levels and Egg Quality

Most of you might be aware that progesterone is playing a significant role when it comes to infertility treatments today. It’s also known to play an important role in pregnancy and miscarriage. But, several people ask us what progesterone does with the egg quality. Is there any relationship between these two entities? Let’s try to understand this here now…

Understanding about Progesterone Synthesis:

Now, let’s try to understand about the progesterone synthesis here. There is a common misconception that progesterone is being produced by the ovary. But, it’s not so. The primary producer of this hormone is the corpus luteum, which is formed after the fertilization of your egg. The hormone will be released from the dominant follicle of the corpus luteum for the first 6 to 8 weeks of pregnancy.

The Relationship between Egg Quality and Progesterone Synthesis:

Now, understand that the ovary will produce a dominant follicle every month, which will be carrying the egg. Upon ovulation, this egg will be released from this dominant follicle and thereafter the remaining cyst would become the corpus luteum. So, the relationship between the egg quality and progesterone levels is quite obvious now. If the egg that is being produced is not very healthy, then the resulting corpus luteum would tend to produce less amount of progesterone. Thus, there is a strong relationship between progesterone levels and quality of the egg. Also, remember that the corpus luteum is present within the ovary, but it is not ovary that produces required levels of progesterone when there is no ovulation and fertilization of the healthy egg.

Testing of Progesterone Levels:

As mentioned earlier, progesterone is produced by a healthy corpus luteum and hence, the levels of the hormone are measured on “Day 21” of the menstrual cycle. To be more accurate, it will be recorded on “Day 7” after your ovulation. For a fertile cycle, the levels will be 30 ng/ml or above.

So, how can this interrelationship be used to improve the egg quality and hence, fertility? Well, you can increase the likelihood of the good quality egg in the next cycle by regulating the hormones in the current cycle. This method is becoming popular now and is called “estrogen priming”.

References:

  1. http://attainfertility.com/2013/08/dr-estil-strawn-egg-quality-progesterone
  2. http://fertility.ca/eggs/menstrual-cycle-reflect-quality-eggs/