Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) Lab Test

FSH or follicle stimulating hormone is a fertility hormone secreted by the pituitary gland.

What Is the Function of This Hormone?

FSH regulates the menstrual cycle in female. It stimulates the follicles. Its level varies throughout the cycle, the highest being just before the release of egg.

In men, it regulates the production of sperms. Its level remains almost constant.

When Is It Ordered?

  • In evaluation of infertility
  • Menstrual problem
  • Puberty disorders like early or late puberty onset
  • Disorders of the pituitary
  • Gonadal problems
  • Ovarian cysts
  • Evaluating menopausal problems

The test for serum follicle stimulating hormone is usually done in conjunction with LH levels to get a more complete picture.

Preparing for the Test

It is a simple blood test. No preparation is required.

Some medicines, such as cimetidine, clomiphene, digitalis, and levodopa, can change your test results. So, inform your doctor about all medicines you are taking.

Also birth control pills, if being taken, needs to be stopped at least 4 weeks prior to this test.

Inform the doctor about any scan, especially radioactive scans, like that for thyroid, that have been performed in the last 7 to 10 days of the test. This is because, such scans may affect the test result.

Normal Serum FSH Reference Range

Results may be interpreted according to the reference range. Normal values of serum FSH differ with person’s age and gender.

Women:
Before puberty: 0 – 4.0 mIU/ml
During puberty: 0.3 – 10.0 mIU/ml
After puberty: 4.7 – 21.5 mIU/ml
After menopause: 25.8 – 134.8 mIU/ml

Men
Before puberty: 0 – 5.0 mIU/ml
During puberty: 0.3 – 10.0 mIU/ml
After puberty: 1.5 – 12.4 mIU/ml