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LH (luteinizing hormone)

About the test
What is this test done for?
LH stands for luteinizing hormone, which is a blood test that measures the amount of LH, which is released by the pituitary gland in the blood.
Why is it Done?

This is a specialized blood test that detects the amount of LH levels in the blood and is done for

  • Finding out the cause of infertility
  • Finding out the cause of menstrual irregularities
  • Finding out the dysfunctions of testicles or ovaries
  • Monitoring the response to the therapy of infertility
  • Determining, whether ovulation is occurring or no
When should it be performed?

This test is performed when a patient is

  • Having signs and symptoms of infertility
    • Abnormal periods
    • Irregular periods
    • No periods or periods suddenly stop
    • Alteration of sex drive
    • Pain during sex (dysperunia)
    • Weight gain
  • Having symptoms of menstrual irregularities
    • In elderly woman, when she has prolonged amenorrhea (absent menses),  it helps in determining menopause
  • When a male has low testosterone levels, low muscle mass or decreased sex drive
  • A child and shows signs of puberty
    • Breast enlargement in females
    • Growth of pubic hair
    • Growth of testicles and penis in boys
    • Beginning of menstruation in girls
  • Having symptoms of pituitary disorders, which can lead to infertility
How is it done
A blood sample will be collected from a vein in your arm. No special precautions like fasting required.

The test results are normal for different ranges for different circumstances

  • Pre-ovulation – 1.68-15 IU/L
  • Mid-cycle – 21.9-56.6 IU/L
  • Luteal phase – 0.61-16.3 IU/L
  • Post menopause – 14.2-52.3 IU/L
  • Males – 1.24-7.8 IU/L

High levels of LH indicate

  • In females
    • Ovaries are removed (post hysterectomy status) or absent
    • Polycystic ovarian syndrome
    • Early puberty in young girls
    • Exposure to radiation
    • Chemotherapy
    • Ovarian tumor
    • Auto immune disease
    • Turner syndrome
  • In males
    • Testicles are removed or absent
    • Testicles not working due to mumps, exposure to x rays, chemotherapy or injury
    • Klinefelter syndrome
    • Cancer

Low levels of progesterone indicate

  • Anorexia nervosa
  • Pituitary gland failure
  • Damage to hypothalamus (brain)
  • Stress
  • Low body weight
Other Tests
  • FSH
    • It is a routine blood test carried out to evaluate FSH (follicle stimulating hormone) levels of blood
    • Abnormal FSH levels indicate infertility, pituitary disorder, hypothalamus disorder
    • In females it indicates menstrual irregularities
    • In males it indicates erectile dysfunction
  • Testosterone
    • It is a special blood test that evaluates the amount of testosterone in the blood
    • Abnormal testosterone levels indicate infertility, erectile dysfunction, delayed puberty or reduced sex drive
  • Estrogen
    • It is a specialized blood test that evaluates the amount of estrogen present in the blood
    • Abnormal estrogen levels indicate infertility, menstrual irregularities, tumors of ovary or ovarian failure
  • Progesterone
    • It is a specialized blood test that evaluates the amount of progesterone present in the blood
    • Abnormal progesterone levels indicate infertility, ectopic pregnancy, ovarian cancer, miscarriage or adrenal cancer
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