Trouble conceiving? A simple at-home test might help

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A simple at-home test might help with ovulation. (KTRK)

For some women trying to conceive, it can be a long and emotional process, but a simple over the counter at-home ovulation predictor kit is helping some women get pregnant and teaching them about their bodies.

Maggie Weathersby became a mom to sweet little Vonn last year, but it wasn't an easy process getting here.

"I found out that I had endometriosis," said Weathersby.

Weathersby underwent surgery and then her physician had an important message.

"If you want to get pregnant, you should probably do it soon because endometriosis can come back and hinder the process of getting pregnant," she recalled.

So, she and her husband tried to conceive for six months.

"It wasn't happening," added Weathersby.

That's when she turned to ovulation predictor kits from the drugstore, which measure the luteinizing hormone in the urine.

"That's a hormone made by the brain that signals the ovary to ovulate or release an egg," said Houston Fertility Institute's Dr. Alexa Clapp, a fertility specialist affiliated with Memorial Hermann Memorial City Medical Center.

She said these kits measure the peak fertility window from when the luteinizing hormone starts to surge to the next few days during the life of the egg, which only lives about 24 hours.

"These kits are fairly effective. The probability is greater than 90 percent," explained Dr. Clapp.

Dr. Clapp says these kits are a great tool to help women determine their menstrual cycle length and when they actually ovulate, which helped Weathersby.

"Come to find out, I didn't know when I was ovulating," Weathersby explained.

Within two months of using the ovulation predictor kit, Weathersby learned she was pregnant.

"I was definitely stressed out before ovulation tests, and ovulation tests took some of that stress away," recalled Weathersby.

Dr. Clapp said that women under 35 should see a fertility specialist after trying for a year. For women over 35, if they aren't pregnant within six months, she recommends seeing a specialist. Finally, if you try using these ovulation predictor kits and don't get a positive result on the test, you should definitely see a specialist because you may not be ovulating.


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