Context: Although adequate luteal hormone production is essential for establishing pregnancy, luteal phase deficiency (LPD) is poorly characterized among eumenorrheic women. Objective: We assessed the prevalence and overlap of two established LPD diagnostic criteria: short luteal phase duration less than10 days (clinical LPD) and suboptimal luteal progesterone of 5 ng/mL or less (biochemical LPD) and their relationship with reproductive hormone concentrations. Design, Setting, and Participants: We conducted a prospective study in western New York (2005- 2007) following 259 women, aged 18-44 years, for up to two menstrual cycles. Results: Among ovulatory cycles with recorded cycle lengths (n463), there were 41 cycles (8.9%) with clinical LPD, 39 cycles (8.4%) with biochemical LPD, and 20 cycles (4.3%) meeting both criteria. Recurrent clinical and biochemical LPD was observed in eight (3.4%) and five (2.1%) women, respectively. ClinicalandbiochemicalLPDwereeach associated with lower follicular estradiol (both P ≤ .001) and luteal estradiol (P = .03 and P = .02, respectively) after adjusting for age, race, and percentagebodyfat. Clinical, but not biochemical, LPD was associated with lower LH and FSH across all phases of the cycle (P ≤ .001). Conclusions: Clinical and biochemical LPD were evident among regularly menstruating women. Estradiol was lower in LPD cycles under either criterion, but LH and FSH were lower only in association with shortened luteal phase (ie, clinical LPD), indicating that clinical and biochemical LPD may reflect different underlying mechanisms. Identifying ovulation in combination with a welltimed luteal progesterone measurement may serve as a cost-effective and specific tool for LPD assessment by clinicians and researchers.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Biochemistry
- Biochemistry, medical
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism