Written by: Dr. Amy Beckley, PhD, Founder and Inventor of the Proov test — the first and only FDA-cleared test to confirm ovulation at home.
Written on 5/5/22
If you want to get pregnant, fertility testing is a great place to start. Fertility tests provide invaluable information about your fertility, hormones, and ability to conceive.
But you may be wondering if your fertility test is accurate. Let’s dive in to learn more!
Are fertility tests accurate?
For the most part, the answer is yes — fertility tests are accurate. If you’re curious about the accuracy of a specific fertility test, we recommend checking the information that came with that test or reaching out to the test manufacturer.
All Proov fertility hormone tests are 99% accurate at detecting their respective hormones. However, it’s important to make sure you understand what each fertility test is intended to do and the information you’ll receive from them, as this will influence exactly what they’re accurate at.
Take an ovulation test, for example. Most ovulation tests are 99% accurate. But do you know what exactly they’re accurate at detecting?
You may have guessed that ovulation tests are 99% accurate at detecting ovulation. That actually isn’t quite right.
Ovulation tests measure luteinizing hormone (LH for short). LH surges right before ovulation occurs — about 12-36 hours before — to trigger the ovary to release the egg. LH is what should cause ovulation to occur.
A positive ovulation test indicates a surge in LH has been detected; not that ovulation itself has been detected. In fact, a positive ovulation test tells you nothing about whether or not ovulation actually occurred.
Point being, while most fertility tests are accurate (again, always be sure to check your specific fertility test in question), they may not be telling you exactly what you think.
What are the different types of fertility tests?
There are so many different kinds of fertility tests and many provide completely different pieces of information. It’s important to know that there is no single test that can give you all the possible information about your fertility.
Different tests provide different pieces of information and you can think of each test result like a small piece of your fertility puzzle — each one brings you closer and closer to the big picture!
While we cannot cover every single fertility test out there (seriously, we’d be here forever!), we can provide a brief overview of a few options.
Here are some examples of different accurate fertility test options.
Fertility Tests for Her
Ovulation Testing: When trying to conceive, knowing when and if you’re ovulating is critical to timing intercourse around when you’re most likely to conceive. While your doctor can run hormone tests for ovulation at home, it’s often easier (and cheaper) to use at-home hormone tests.
Ovarian Reserve Testing: Ovarian reserve testing helps you understand your reproductive timeline, i.e. how many eggs you have left. Some companies offer at-home blood tests for ovarian reserve, but we think testing ovarian reserve via urine, with a test like Proov Reserve is less-invasive.
Uterine or Ovarian Scans: Your doctor can perform scans and imaging on your uterus and ovaries to determine if there are any anatomical issues that could impact your fertility.
Other Hormone Tests: Your doctor may consider other hormone tests to understand your fertility. Some examples of this include thyroid hormones, prolactin, vitamin D, and others.
Fertility Tests for Him
Semen Analysis: You may want your partner to do a semen analysis to better understand the quantity and quality of his sperm (i.e. does he have enough sperm and can they swim to the egg). While your doctor can perform a semen analysis at their office, at-home male fertility tests work great for this as well.
Hormone Testing: Testosterone is an important hormone for sperm production. Understanding his levels via a blood test from your doctor or an at-home hormone test can provide a more complete picture of sperm quality.
Imaging: Similar to women, men can have imaging done to detect any anatomical issues that may make getting pregnant more difficult. This includes ultrasounds or other tests.
Testicular Biopsy: Testicular biopsies can be performed to identify if any issues with the testes may contribute to infertility or the availability of sperm.
How do I choose the right fertility test for me?
It’s no secret that fertility tests aren’t one size fits all. Since each gives a new piece of information, it can be hard to determine where to start.
While we always recommend consulting your doctor with any personal questions or concerns, it can also be helpful to come to them with some initial information. Results gathered via at-home fertility tests often provide a great starting point for better conversations with your doctor.
If you’re looking for an at-home test for yourself, Proov Complete is a great place to start! In just one hormone test, you can get all the information you need about your ovulation, plus insight into your ovarian reserve.
Even better, all your testing is completed at home via urine and your results are saved in the Proov Insight app so you can easily share them with your doctor.
For him, the Yo Male Fertility Test provides insight into his sperm quality and quantity, to identify any problems with his swimmers sooner rather than later.
Have questions about which fertility tests are right for you? Reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.