Making Sense of Fertility Terms

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You would like to have a baby.

Sounds simple doesn’t it!

But sometimes, almost before you know it, you’ve entered into a world of blood hormone tests, GP appointments, possibly hospital consultations with medical professionals talking about things you’ve never had to think about before – and if you’ve started looking on forums then there are even more acronyms and abbreviations being bandied around.

Suddenly it’s all about “OH and I have been TTC for a while, our AMH, LH, FSH and SA are all normal. I’m now on CD31, we did lots of BD around CD10-14 and as I’m 17 DPO and nothing yet, I did a HPT and just as I did my AF arrived! Typical! That’ll be a BFN then!!” and you wonder if everybody is speaking a language you’ve never been taught!!

Here at Nurture 4 Life we are here to help make your path to parenthood as stress free as possible and so, to help you decipher all those often-confusing terms, we’ve put together your own mini dictionary …

TTC: Trying to Conceive. Eg. “We’ve been TTC for 12 months”.

LMP: Last Menstrual Period. Day one of your last bleed.

DH/OH: Dear Husband/Other Half

DW/DP: Dear Wife/Dear Partner

AF: Aunt Flo. Your period. Bleeding. A common ‘nickname’ on fertility forums.

CD: Cycle Day. i.e the first day of your cycle is often written as CD1.

BD: Baby Dance. The nicest way of putting it that anybody could come up with. Otherwise known as having sex, actively trying to conceive and numerous other terms that we really don’t need to go into!

BBT: Basal Body Temperature. If you chart your temperature as a way of gathering information about your cycle, this is what your thermometer is reading. Your very core body temperature.

DPO: Days Post Ovulation. e.g I’m 7 DPO.

HPT: Home Pregnancy Test. Otherwise known as POAS: Pee on a Stick!

HCG: Human Chorionic Gonadotrophin. The pregnancy hormone. This is the hormone that is looked for in the blood or the urine to confirm pregnancy.

BFN: Big Fat negative. Enough said.

BFP: Big Fat Positive. Yay! And brace yourself for a huge influx of mixed emotions – joy, euphoria, anxiety, worry and hope.

FSH: Follicle-Stimulating Hormone. The levels of this hormone will be tested between days 1-5 of your cycle. FSH helps to trigger activity in your ovaries and is needed for ovulation.

LH: Lutenising Hormone. This hormone peaks just before ovulation as it is needed to trigger your ovarian follicle to release the egg.

AMH: Anti-Mullerian Hormone. Primordial follicles in your ovaries will produce AMH, so testing for this hormone is a good indicator of how many ovarian follicles you have left. A low number may indicate a lower ovarian reserve.

SA: Semen Analysis. Sooo important for your partner to be tested too. Male fertility is just as important as female reproductive health.

HSC: Hysteroscopy. A hysteroscopy is a procedure used to examine the inside of the womb (uterus).

Endo: Endometriosis. A condition (thought to be auto-immune) where endometrial tissue, which is normally found in your womb is found in other areas of the body. This tissue will still react to hormonal changes so will bleed and cause pain and scarring.

PCOS: Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. This occurs when the egg sacs in the ovary don’t develop properly and cause a number of benign cysts on the surface of the ovary instead. To be diagnosed with PCOS, you will also have raised levels of Lutenizing Hormone and Testosterone. There is actually a difference between Polycystic Ovaries and Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. See below.

PCO: Polycystic Ovaries. This occurs when the egg sacs in the ovary don’t develop properly and cause a number of benign cysts on the surface of the ovary instead. And without having raised levels of LH and Testosterone. (See above.) As opposed to PCOS, you can have an isolated episode of polycystic ovaries without having polycystic ovarian syndrome.

And the happiest one of them all? EDD: Your Estimated Due Date, given in your twelfth week of pregnancy at your dating scan!

As always, if you’re feeling overwhelmed and don’t know where to start on your fertility journey, we are here to help.   You can either book a free, no obligation call with me or drop me an email.

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