Q&A: What do follicle stimulating hormone levels signify?
What do follicle stimulating hormone levels signify?
Follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) is released by the pituitary gland. This hormone is vital in regulating a woman’s monthly cycle. The level of the hormone in the blood will fluctuate but is generally highest just before ovulation. The FSH helps with the release of eggs from the ovaries. Interestingly, it also helps men with sperm production. A man’s levels will not fluctuate as a woman’s do.
Your doctor may test your levels of FSH if you are having trouble becoming pregnant. Your levels are tested by having blood drawn from a vein in your arm. They may draw blood from you several days in a row to watch for changes in the FSH level.
High levels of FSH may indicate:
- Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS)
- Ovarian problems
Low levels may indicate:
- No ovulation
- Problem with pituitary gland functioning
- High levels of stress
Your doctor will help you to interpret the results and take the appropriate course of action for your body.