FSH (Follicle Stimulating Hormone) tests

Are you experiencing fertility issues? If yes, this FSH test is your doctor’s first recommendation for both husband and wife. This test is used to check fertility issues in both genders. FSH lab test results can vary but it helps to diagnose the cause of problems.  

Learn all the details about FSH tests in this article.  

What is it for? 

The follicle-stimulating Hormone (FSH) test is used to check fertility issues and the health of your sexual functions (especially dysfunction of the ovaries or testicles), and diagnosis of pituitary or hypothalamus disorders which can affect the production of FSH. It is also used to check other hormone tests such as LH (Luteinizing Hormone), testosterone, estradiol, and progesterone. These tests are used differently according to whether you are a woman, a man, or a child.

In women, these tests are used to check:  

  • The cause of fertility problems.  
  • If there is a problem with ovarian function. 
  • Reason for irregular or stopped menstrual periods.  
  • To confirm menopause and/or perimenopause. Menopause is a natural event in a woman’s life where her menstrual periods stop, and she can’t get pregnant anymore. Usually, it begins when a woman is around 50 years old. Perimenopause is a similar transition period before menopause, but it only lasts for several years. FSH testing is used at the end of this transition.  

In men, these tests are used to check: 

  • The cause of infertility.  
  • The reason behind low sperm count.  
  • If there is any problem with the testicles.  

In children, these tests are used to check whether they have early or delayed puberty: 

  • Puberty can be early if it starts before age 9 in girls and before age 10 in boys.  
  • Puberty can be delayed if it hasn’t started by age 13 in girls and age 14 in boys.  

Who needs to get tested? 

This test is recommended by your doctor for various reasons according to your gender and age:  

A woman may need this test if: 

  • If they are unable to get pregnant even after 1 year of trying.  
  • Having irregular menstrual cycles.  
  • If your periods are stopped due to menopause or perimenopause.  

 A man may need this test if:  

  • If you fail to make your partner pregnant after 1 year of trying.  
  • Your sex drive is lowered.  

Both men and women may need this testing if they have symptoms of a pituitary disorder like – fatigue, weight loss, weakness, decreased appetite, etc. A child may need this test to check whether he or she is having early puberty or late puberty according to age. 

Risk and safety considerations 

An FSH test is usually done with a simple blood test in which a small sample of blood is needed for the test, so the risks are minimal, you may have a slight bruise or pain at the injection site. However, doctors usually do not only use the FSH test alone to find if a person is going through menopause or identify reasons for infertility. The only problem is hormone testing takes hours and days because a person’s hormones can fluctuate over time. So, once your blood sample is taken and tested for hormones, after an assessment of your levels, they ask you to repeat the cycle two or three times to get accurate results, especially for fertility.  

Usually, FSH levels can be inaccurate particularly in females but not in males. Certain medications can affect FSH levels and give false readings. So, make sure to consult with your doctor about whether you can take medicine during the test or not.
Here are some of the medications that could increase your FSH levels: 

  • Cimetidine 
  • Digitalis 
  • Levodopa 
  • Clomiphene 

Medications that can decrease FSH levels : 

  • Oral contraceptives 
  • Phenothiazines 
  • Hormone replacement therapies  

If you are concerned about hormonal imbalances, you can talk to or visit our endocrinologist. Register here and get a consultation. And if you need help from the best endocrinologists in NYC to get your condition treated, call us on +1-347-384-5690 and get answers to all your queries. Log on to  www.doralhw.org or visit us at 1797 Pitkin Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11212 to book an appointment with our endocrinologist to get the best treatment. We have the best endocrinologists who treat these kinds of diseases and helpful staff to aid you during your treatment.