Many couples that fail to conceive turn to the In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) process. Top infertility doctors in Mumbai recommend this process as it has a safe track record. Couples can decrease their chances of miscarriage and increase their chances of conception and having healthy babies.
But, people with low AMH may not benefit from IVF. What is AMH, and how does it impact your chances of having a successful IVF procedure? Let’s explore.
What is AMH?
AMH or Anti-Mullerian Hormone is a hormone produced in a woman’s ovarian follicles. The granulosa cells in the ovarian follicles produce this hormone. According to a study by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the production level of Anti-Mullerian Hormones determines the quality of the woman’s ovarian reserve.
The term’ ovarian reserve’ refers to the basket of “eggs” present in a woman’s ovary. Low AMH levels indicate diminished ovarian reserves (DOR). Women are born with full ovarian reserves. The ‘egg count’ diminishes with time. Since AMH levels and fertility chances are directly linked, AMH tests can tell patients whether they have healthy egg counts or DOR.
AMH and IVF
AMH tests can’t determine natural fertility. These tests are mainly used to predict the number of eggs women undergoing IVF may produce. Based on this prediction, doctors give appropriate dozes of medication to fuel egg production in the ovary.
The probability of successful pregnancies through IVF depends mainly on the health of the woman’s ovarian reserve. Women with low AMH levels are less likely to produce high-quality eggs. Hence, they’re less likely to find success with IVF.
When a woman has low AMH or abnormally high FSH levels, it denotes a compromised ability to produce high-quality eggs. It means there is a relatively low probability of success with IVF and a poor fertility prognosis. The low level of the anti-mullerian hormone usually indicates that the AMH level is below 1.05 ng/mL. Thus, it means there is a low chance of becoming pregnant, and many IVF centers deny treatment to women with such a low AMH level.
However, recently in the journal of Human Reproduction, CHR said that women suffering from an undetectable low level of AMH, i.e., below 0.16 ng/mL, can also conceive. They can also become pregnant successfully if they take proper prevention and well-designed ovarian stimulation protocols.
What is the Perfect AMH Level for Women?
There are no “perfect” AMH levels. Each IVF clinic has its approach to determining the safe AMH level for a patient trying to undergo IVF. According to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence –
- AMH levels typically range from 5.4 pmol/l (0.4195 ng/mL) to 25.0 pmol/l (1.942 ng/mL).
- The higher the AMH level, the better the body will respond to gonadotrophin stimulations during IVF treatment.
AMH levels can vary with age, health conditions, and other external factors. As a general guide, here’s how AMH levels typically vary with age –
- Average AMH level at 25 – 3.0 ng/mL
- Average AMH level at 30: 2.5 ng/mL
- Average AMH level at 35: 1.5 ng/ mL
- Average AMH level at 40: 1 ng/mL
- Average AMH level at 45: 0.5 ng/mL
People with AMH levels below 1.5 ng/mL produce a minimal number of eggs with IVF. People with lower AMH levels produce an extremely small number of eggs.
Why Do Patients Have Low AMH?
It’s normal for women to produce fewer eggs as they age. AMH levels decrease naturally across a woman’s reproductive lifespan. But that doesn’t mean all young women have perfect AMH levels.
- Women older than 35 have low AMH, and their chances of success in IVF are very low.
- Women who smoke, drink alcohol are also likelier to have lower levels of AMH.
- Women suffering from early-onset menopause have very low AMH levels.
- Undergoing intense cancer treatment also negatively impacts AMH levels.
How to Increase AMH?
Low AMH doesn’t mean you have low-quality eggs in your ovary. It only refers to the number of eggs in the ovary. Do you have low AMH and still want to undergo IVF treatment? Here are some proven ways of boosting your egg count –
- Boost your vitamin D levels by consuming foods items like salmon, eggs, etc.
- Increase your exposure to sunlight.
- Get vitamin D levels checked by doctors to track improvement.
- Lose weight by following a more nutritious diet.
- Get daily exercise.
It’s entirely possible to receive infertility treatment, even if you have low AMH levels. Follow this guide, stay healthy, and never lose hope!