Checking the level of oestrogen in the blood is essential to timing an assisted fertility cycle and for women who are entering menopause to determine whether they are experiencing oestrogen dominance. The level of oestrogen fluctuates based on the time in a woman's cycle. The follicular phase, from the start of the menstrual period to the maturity of the eggs prior to ovulation, is dominated by oestrogen. Checking oestrogen is done by a doctor by via blood work. The process begins by establishing a baseline number early in the cycle and then observing the changes in the number through the follicular phase.
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Discuss oestrogen testing with your doctor. He will recommend the best day for testing to begin. If you are not ovulating, or do not have a regular menstrual period, the doctor may choose to use progesterone supplements to induce a natural period.
On the first full flow day of your period, contact your doctor to inform him that you are on the first day of your menstrual cycle.
Attend baseline testing. This is usually scheduled about the third day of the menstrual period. The level of oestrogen in your blood on this date is known as the baseline level. High baseline numbers -- more than 75 pg/ml -- on an oestrogen test can indicate that ovarian reserve is diminishing, meaning that the quality and quantity of the eggs remaining in the ovaries may make it difficult to conceive.
If necessary, attend follow up testing every few days. Some clinics will monitor the levels of oestrogen in the blood for several days up to ovulation. Levels that fluctuate may indicate an issue with the cycle, such as a functional cyst developing. These cysts can grow to be quite large and may cause discomfort. They may also rupture, twist, or bleed, which are painful complications. If a cyst appears, fertility drugs used to stimulate egg growth may be reduced in dosage or changed.
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