Is it ovarian cysts or early menopause causing my infertility ?

(3 Posts)
erilou38 Fri 20-Sep-13 22:29:52

Hi all. would just like some advice really and what people think. I'm 38 and have been trying to conceive for 13 months now with no luck. i had my first appointment at NHS infertility clinic a couple of months ago where they found i have 2 or 3 ovarian cysts. Iv'e been having irregular periods for 18 months now and my period is lighter and shorter than it used to be. The nurse said i have a hormone imbalance as both my estradiol and LH levels were elevated. she said this could be caused by the cysts and the reason why my cycles are irregular. My FSH level came back at the normal range. my progesterone is low and i'm not ovulating. I had a high FSH 8 months ago when i had tests at my doctor surgery, it was 20. The doctor said this indicated borderline menopause. i went back to the doctor this week, i haven't another appointment at infertility clinic until end of november. The doctor who i saw the other day says she isn't sure what's going on. She says FSH levels can flucuate wildly at the start of the menopause and so my last low FSH didn't necessarily mean it was accurate. I'm so confused!!! for the past couple of years i have been getting what i think could be menopausal symptoms. Irregular periods, a bit of vaginal dryness, needing to wee a lot, palpitations, feeling hot in bed at night, mood swings, anxiety and hair loss on my head. Could all this be caused by cysts or is it more likely early menopause ? I'm shocked really if it is menopause as i'm still fairly young at 38 and i used to be super-fertile! I had 4 children within 7 years, so i don't understand how this could be happening. The reason i would like another child is because i am in a new relationship, (married last March) and hubby has no kids of his own. Don't want people to think that i'm being greedy LOL! Anyway, what do you girls think it could be ? Thank you.

Hi Erilou

A couple of thoughts initially come to mind - what day was the FSH taken when it came back as 20? It needs to be, ideally, between day two and day five to indicate what your ovarian reserve is. A result of under 12 is good. Additionally you could have what is called an AMH test (you may have to do this privately - cost is approximately £80-100) but this is a really good indicator of ovarian reserve (probably more useful than FSH). The higher the AMH result the better and this can be done on any day of the cycle.

Your elevated LH could be due to the cysts, and it would be worth having a chat with someone about whether or not you have an underlying diagnosis of polycystic ovary syndrome (thinking specifically about hair loss/mood swings).

In terms of treatment, if your FSH/AMH are OK and you have a progesterone of <20 seven days before the expected onset of a period (i.e. an anovulatory progesterone measurement) then it might be worth asking for a trial of clomiphene (Clomid).

The reproductive medicine unit at St Mary's Hospital in London is the UK's leading centre for anovulatory disorders (headed by Prof Stephen Franks and Dr Davinia White). If it is found that you have a disorder then I would STRONGLY suggest that you are referred there (if you are not in London then you could ask your GP to apply for special funding (known as an Individual Funding Request) to be referred there).

Good luck!

erilou38 Fri 27-Sep-13 15:00:51

Hi, my FSH was taken on day 2 of my cycle so i guess that would have been an accurate reading which really worries me!! My most recent FSH was 5.2, although my GP said that the levels can flucuate in perimenopause so not a good sign! Since monday i have been doing clearblue ovulation tests and had been getting a negative result until today which was positive. Not sure if i am ovulating, haven't noticed any EWCM and no tummy cramps but it would be day 12 of my cycle so i guess it's possible. Unless it's a false positive due to the cysts or menopause causing my LH to be elevated. Feeling a bit optimistic though because i had been getting negatives until today. I may ask my GP about that London clinic, thank you for telling me. Done the deed with hubby about an hour ago lol so really hoping for a BFP in 2 weeks time! Would be a ddream come true! x

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