Some of my patients will know that I have been trialling a new service which has the ability to map the female sex hormones throughout the cycle, and due to its success I am now recommending hormone testing to all of my fertility couples.
The diagnostic tests use saliva taken at certain points throughout the female cycle to check the varying levels of progesterone, oestradial, DHEA, cortisol, testosterone and melatonin which all have an effect on fertility. Most patients struggling with fertility will have the obligatory blood tests ordered by the GP to check for FSH levels at the beginning of the cycle, and the 21 day blood test to check for post-ovulation hormones. However, blood only contains a small amount of hormone compared to saliva and so is often not an altogether accurate reflection of the level of hormone present in the body. Also there can be difficulties with the 21 day blood test as often patients don’t ovulate at day 14, particularly if struggling with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome making the test invalid. The saliva testing maps your hormone levels throughout the cycle and so we can gain a better understanding of the interaction between all the relevant hormones needed for conception.
Once the saliva is collected, it is sent to labs in the UK and America who are able to produce a comprehensive report available to the practitioner who can then prescribe the relevant supplements and treatment plan to best balance the hormones.
I have been trialling this service for the past 3 months and of the patients that have taken part, 75% have already conceived. It is able to give me a much greater insight into my patients’ state of health and where our focus needs to lie and I’m finding it an invaluable diagnostic tool. For this reason I have been urging all my fertility couples to try saliva testing to give us the best possible chance for a positive outcome.
If you would like to give it a go, please just mention it to me at your next consultation and we can talk through whether this option would be right for you.
Verity Allen - BSc, BA, MBAcC, Lic Ac