I seem to have spent a lot of time talking about AMH in the past couple of weeks. Some women who have discovered their AMH is a lot lower than they expected, and others who are just wondering if they should be getting their AMH checked. But what is AMH? Do you need yo know what your AMH is?
AMH stands for Anti-Mullerian Hormone. This is a hormone secreted by cells in developing egg sacs (follicles), and the AMH level in a woman’s blood is generally a good indicator of her ovarian reserve. AMH does not change during your menstrual cycle, so the blood sample can be taken at any time of the month – even while you are using oral contraception.
Not everyone needs to know their AMH level. Knowing your AMH might be useful if:
- you have been trying to conceive for over six months, and want to find out if your ovarian reserve is appropriate for your age
- you are considering IVF or other fertility treatments, as low levels of AMH could provide an indication of how well you will respond to IVF medication
- you have had chemotherapy or ovarian surgery and want to know if this has affected your future fertility
- you suspect an ovarian tumour
- you would like to conceive in the future, and just want to understand your current position. It might also be important if you are considering fertility preservation options.
If you fall into any of the above categories, the first thing you should do is talk to your GP. They might send you to have your AMH tested, or they might refer you to talk to a fertility specialist.