Around about the time I started preparing (mentally and physically) for our fifth round of IVF, I picked up with my fertility support network (yes, I’ve got one and you should, too!) on the tests it would be smart to run, to see where my body is at. I turned 38 at the beginning of the year, and following a chemical pregnancy, wanted to check in.
But when it comes to tests, where do you start – and stop? As a CEO and founder, I do like looking at numbers, and results. But as an IVF mum, I know there’s so much more to it – not least, luck on the day – plus an element of surrender. You can only do so many tests, after all, and each one can open a can of worms.
My friend and IVF prep expert, fertility nutritionist Melanie Brown helped me pin down a couple of starting points, for pre-IVF at-home testing. And from there, I threw in a bit of my own experience, awareness and research. I ended up limiting testing (aside from the usual gamut of clinical assessment) to:
- DHEA testing
- AMH testing
- vaginal microbiome testing
At age 38, and with a recent early loss as part of my journey, I’m keen to understand my microbiome – and the environment I’m nourishing for implantation (see my IVF supplements and superfoods check-lists for context). Plus, understand how my DHEA and AMH levels sit, for a rough picture of my egg status, pre-collection.
Here are the three at-home tests I’ve used to measure and dive into DHEA, AMH and vaginal microbiome status. All super straightforward, and with very different results.
Have you read Part 2: superfoods? Do head over there if not, for how my IVF prep kitchen is looking, plus Part 1, and the supplements I’m taking ahead of egg retrieval and IVF.
This is IVF at age 38, and the insight I prioritise. Here are the tests I went for, and my results.