Transparency: I was gifted a female hormone test kit from LetsGetChecked to try and review. I wasn’t paid, but I do receive commission on referrals. My views are honest and my own.
Hi, it’s nice to see you here!
Today, I’m talking about female fertility and home fertility test kits.
Some months back I was approached by LetsGetChecked who wondered if I’d like to try one of their at home health tests.
LetsGetChecked have been offering personal health tests in the UK since 2016. They use the world’s best accredited labs and tests range from sexual health, wellness, vitamin status, lyme disease, and more.
Since most of my readers are women planning or parenting little ones, I was beyond interested to try a home fertility test kit.
Our family is complete and I just turned 40, but I still have fertility curiosity, like am I still fertile even though I’m breastfeeding? Am I approaching menopause soon? How quickly is my fertility declining? When can I expect to see menopausal symptoms?
I admit, I didn’t know much about home fertility tests until I started to write this post. At first I thought a home fertility test kit could tell me everything, but now I know that at home fertility tests only constitute one part of the bigger picture.
Confusion was rife for me at the beginning, so let’s take a look at what a home fertility test kit is and isn’t.
How can a home fertility test help me?
Here’s what a home fertility test kit can do:
- Provide a snapshot of your hormone levels
- Give you insight into your broader hormonal health
- Act as a starting point for fertility discussions
- Help you track hormonal health over time
What a home fertility test kit is not
Here’s what a home fertility test kit can’t do:
- Tell you how easy it will be to get pregnant
- Give a definitive indicator of fertility or infertility
- Diagnose a condition
- Replace a doctor’s care
After learning this, let’s look at who is going to find a home fertility test kit most useful.
Who is a home fertility test kit for?
You’re starting a family soon
If you’re trying for a baby soon, a test is a relatively inexpensive and quick way to get some insight into your fertility status and hormone levels.
You can talk about what your results mean with a nurse at the time of getting your results. Your nurse will advise on conditions that relate to your hormone levels.
Taking a female hormone test could be the starting point for discussions with your family or doctor – such as do I have a hormonal imbalance? Should we seek further treatment? Should we look into IVF or freeze eggs?
It may act as an early warning system for both fertility and wider health problems in the future.
Bear in mind that test kits are not a panacea – the best indicator of potential fertility is your age. but if you’re breastfeeding, have irregular periods or PCOS symptoms, then this test can help.
You have early menopause concerns
Menopause is diagnosed once your periods have stopped for a year combined with your age, but if you’re under 45 a blood test could help give you some insights.
Taking regular tests will give you a better picture of how your hormones are changing over time.
Learn more about early menopause.
Home fertility test kits
LetsGetChecked offer 3 test kits in its female fertility category.
- Female hormone test (£119), which I review below.
- Ovarian reserve test (£119), measures anti-mullerian hormone to estimate how many eggs you have left. It can’t measure the quality of eggs, however.
- Progesterone test (£69), an option if you want to know if ovulation has occurred.
Read on to hear about the LetsGetChecked female hormone test kit and my results.
The Female Hormone Test Kit
Touted as an “at home female hormone test to provide a broad picture of a woman’s hormonal health, with online results in 5 days.”
Which hormones does the kit test?
The LetsGetChecked female hormone kit tests levels of these essential fertility hormones:
Follicle stimulating hormone (FSH)
Important because it stimulates the ovaries to release an egg. Women who don’t ovulate might have high or low FSH levels, depending on the cause.
Lutenising hormone (LH)
This hormone has various important functions. High levels when not ovulating may indicate menopause, pituitary disorder, or polycystic ovary syndrome.
This is the major female sex hormone. During and after menopause, a woman’s body will gradually produce less oestrogen, causing the symptoms experienced during menopause.
Breastfeeding and pregnant women have higher prolactin levels. Crucially, high levels can stop the ovaries from making oestrogen.
These hormones and their balance help to build a wider picture of your overall hormonal health.
Important must-knows before you take the test
Your blood sample used for this test must be taken on exactly day 3 of your menstrual cycle, so your period will likely be happening.
The test is taken fasted, which means no food and drink before your test. At first I thought I’d find this hard (well, you know mamas who breastfeed in the night need water ASAP in the morning!), but as anxiety about using the lancet intensified, I lost my thirst and appetite! My worrying was needless, of course – more about that in a minute.
Because of the hormones involved and the nature of the test, you must take the sample before 9am, and return it the same day.
And finally, any kind of hormonal birth control will affect the result, so you can’t do this test if you’re using any hormonal method of birth control.
How to take the female hormone test
Order and activate your kit
The first step is to order your kit (remember to use discount code HELEN for 20% off). It will arrive in discreet packaging.
Once you get your kit, activate it on the LetsGetChecked website.
The activation process is simple and takes about 15 minutes – you’ll answer a series of questions including your contact details and personal health questions that may be relevant to your test.
It’s interesting to note that LetsGetChecked need to know what time you intend to take your blood sample. I chose 8am, and asked for a text reminder to be sent – helpful.
Watch ‘how to collect your fingerprick sample‘ to familiarise yourself with the process.
It’s Day 3 of your cycle – it’s test day!
Remember not to eat or drink anything before taking your sample!
Looking inside the test kit box, there’s everything you need to take your own blood sample at home, including a small plastic vial for your sample, 4 lancets, cleansing wipes, and all the packaging you need, including a pre-paid envelope.
Blood donors will recognise the same sort of lancet the blood service use to check iron levels. It feels like a scratch, but it’s really easy to do and not at all fiddly like I expected it would be.
I felt totally
brave empowered after taking my sample!
Send your test kit to LetsGetChecked
I took mine to my local post office in the prepaid envelope. Within 3 days I had confirmation my sample had arrived at the lab.
Await a phone call from the nurse with your results
Wait for a phone call and email from the LetsGetChecked nurse to confirm your results are ready to read on the website.
Female hormone test – my results
I received a phone call from LetsGetChecked to let me know my results were in and available on their website. It took 7 days from taking and posting my sample, to receiving my results.
The LetsGetChecked nurse talked to me about my results. This part is so important and helpful, since the results and their meaning can be overwhelming without a health professional to advise.
The human touch is such an important part of the service. After all, this is a sensitive health test and the results can have a profound impact. Plus, there are so many questions to ask about the results!
Here are the figures!
- Follicle stimulating hormone – 7.9 IU/L
- Luteinising hormone – 5.7 IU/L
- Prolactin – 719 mIU/L
- Estradiol – 98pmol/L
The helpful infographic shows the healthy range of values. It’s really easy to read and I can see my results clearly and get a good overview.
As you can see, everything is normal apart from prolactin. The cause is obvious – I’m still breastfeeding, so of course my prolactin is higher than normal.
Selecting each hormone’s test result brings up an explanation on that point.
From my test, I can clearly see how breastfeeding could affect my ability to conceive. Had I taken this test before trying for our second child, it probably would’ve led to me trying to reduce my first born’s feeding frequency and duration (but I really don’t think his breastfeeding made a difference in the end).
I’m really quite happy with my FSH and LH levels which are in the middle of the normal range. No sign of impending menopause here, which the LetsGetChecked nurse confirmed.
The LetsGetChecked nurse said given my oestradiol level I’m probably less fertile at the moment. As most breastfeeding women know, boobing our little lovelies suppresses oestogen as well!
So, the takeaway for me is I’m not menopausal yet but I probably have reduced fertility due to breastfeeding.
What does the LetsGetChecked nurse recommend? Take the test again in 6 months. It’s the combination of hormones and their levels over time that can really help us to track our wellness and fertility.
Final thoughts on at home fertility tests + discount code
I learned that a home fertility test kit can’t tell you how easy it will be to get pregnant, but that it is the perfect starting point when trying for a family.
Taking a test a fantastic way to understand your hormones if you’re trying to conceive or worried about hormone imbalance.
The experience really has been a conversation starter for me and my husband, even though we’re not trying to conceive. I felt a sense of responsibility over my health, and also empowerment that it’s possible to take a female hormone test at home.
My plan is to take the female hormone test again in 6 months to see if breastfeeding is having less of an effect on my hormones.
In closing, please know that while home fertility tests are indeed an amazing resource, they don’t replace the care of a doctor. You will, however, have some meaningful information in your hands – it’s all data in your fertility journey!
LetsGetChecked discount code
Take 20% off any order at LetsGetChecked with my discount code ‘HELEN’.
LetsGetChecked Female Hormone Test
Do you have any questions about home fertility tests? Have you ever tried an at home hormone test? Let me know in the comments!