Do Raised Progesterone Levels Indicate Pregnancy?

I am a Clomid patient and each month on day 21 to 23 I'm tested for progesterone levels to determine if I ovulated. This month my level was 85. I know a level of 10 or higher means I ovulated, but does 85 mean that I am pregnant or having twins?


Peg Plumbo CNM

Peg Plumbo has been a certified nurse-midwife (CNM) since 1976. She has assisted at over 1,000 births and currently teaches in the... Read more

Progesterone is largely produced by the corpus luteum (the ruptured spot on the ovary where the egg erupted) until about 10 weeks of gestation. A woman needs approximately 10 ng/mL of circulating progesterone per day to maintain the pregnancy. But pregnancies survive with much lower and much higher levels, so the predictive value of progesterone levels is limited.

The placenta takes over the progesterone production after 10 weeks, and levels gradually increase to about 100 to 200 ng/mL by term. The placenta produces about 250 ng per day. Production of progesterone is independent of fetal well-being, or even the presence of a fetus. This is because the fetus contributes essentially no precursor to progesterone formation. The majority of placental progesterone is derived from maternal cholesterol.

So a high level would not mean multiple pregnancy. It could perhaps mean that you are farther along than you suspect. Higher-than-expected hCG levels would indicate twins, as would higher AFP values.

I would just consider this a good sign and let it go at this. I'm sorry that I have nothing new or remarkable on this.

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