Reasons why an AMH test is worth considering for any woman considering her fertility
Anti-Mullerian hormone is increasingly being recognized as a useful marker for ovarian reserve in women. AMH can predict a woman’s remaining egg supply and is a test worth considering for any woman who wants a reasonable assessment of her fertility.
AMH levels are tested through a simple blood test. Testing can be performed at any time during your cycle, and the results won’t be affected by pregnancy or use of birth control pills.
The science behind AMH
A woman is born with all the eggs in her ovaries she will ever have, typically about 1-2 million at birth. Many of these eggs will die off before you hit puberty, and by menopause, a woman will likely have fewer than 1,000 egg cells left. Egg cells take years to “grow up.” That is, they spend years inside the ovaries in an immature state, maturing just before they are released during the process of ovulation.
AMH is made by the ovaries and is continually produced throughout a woman’s life until she reaches menopause. Because these levels decline the closer you get to menopause, they are an excellent indicator of your remaining egg supply, or ovarian reserve. So, if you have a lot of eggs remaining, you would expect higher levels of AMH in your body. Low levels of AMH typically indicate diminished ovarian reserve, or a diminished supply of eggs. This doesn’t mean that you can’t still get pregnant with a low AMH score, but it indicates it may be more difficult.
There are several key advantages to getting your AMH tested:
- Convenient – Since it can be drawn during any point during your cycle, either on or off contraception, there’s no need to wait until a certain day to take the test – it can be done at any time!
- Reliable – AMH is not produced by other cells in the body, and therefore false positives or negatives are of minimal concern.
- Accurate – It has been shown to be one of the best predictors of egg reserve.
- Informative – What the AMH can tell you in terms of egg supply can help you decide when family building is right for you.
Research has shown that a timely and informed discussion on fertility lowers stress and helps in a couple’s decision making process. For example, if your AMH is high, you might feel more comfortable waiting a few more years to finish an education or start a career before feeling the need to start a family. On the other hand, if you AMH is low, it may lead you down the path of trying to get pregnant sooner or electing to freeze the eggs you have now for later use.
To schedule your AMH test at one of our South Louisiana clinics, contact us today.