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Saturday, November 03, 2018

CAN DHEA HELP YOU GET PREGNANT, IMPROVE FERTILITY?

CAN DHEA HELP YOU GET PREGNANT?


If you have never heard of DHEA, you are not alone. It is not to be confused with DHA which can also be important for fertility. DHEA is talked about in the literature as a supplement to use to improve egg quality. It is a steroid hormone which is produced by your adrenal gland. It is usually at its highest around the age of 30 and declines as we get older. DHEA is a precursor to hormone production and is eventually converted to hormones like estrogen and testosterone. Around the age of menopause, women not only lack estrogens but also androgens and some estrogens originating from adrenal DHEA.

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DHEA is not to be confused with DHA which can also be important for fertility as mentioned earlier.
DHEA is talked about in the literature as a supplement to use to improve egg quality. I did not know about DHEA when I was trying to conceive, but I thought it was worth mentioning it here since studies seem to support its effectiveness. It is a steroid hormone which is produced by your adrenal gland. It is usually at its highest around the age of 30 and declines as we get older. DHEA is a precursor to hormone production and is eventually converted to hormones like estrogen and testosterone. Around the age of menopause, women not only lack estrogens but also androgens. As reported by the National Institutes of Health on a study of women undergoing IVF: “Our results show that DHEA supplementation improves the ovarian function in poor responders and in women over 40 years, suggesting that this molecule alone can raise fecundity and fertility treatment success in women with poor prognosis for pregnancy.” It is available in an over-the-counter supplement form has been studied for its effects on the female reproductive system as well as cognitive function, mood, longevity, lupus, menopause, muscle growth and osteoporosis. Although available over the counter, DHEA treatment should be carefully monitored by a physician.
Here are some of the positive fertility effects of DHEA treatment that have been reported:
  • Increases egg and embryo counts
  • Increases egg ad embryo quality
  • Decreases amount of time to achieve pregnancy in fertility treatment
  • Increases spontaneous pregnancy rates
  • Improves IVF pregnancy rates
  • Decreases miscarriage rates
  • Decreases rates of chromosomally abnormal embryos
Although the research still remains preliminary, these findings hold great promise for the future of infertility. There are differing opinions about taking DHEA as a supplement.  First, you should check with your doctor and have hormonal levels checked.  DHEA can interact with some medications and it can raise hormone levels which can be problematic if you have had, or are at high risk for, some hormone dependent cancers. The women in the study (undergoing IVF) received three tablets daily of 25 mg micronized DHEA for at least 12 weeks before starting a long stimulation protocol for IVF.

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