Friday, February 13, 2009

Determining ovulation

In my twelfth month of trying to conceive, I am using OPK's for the very first time. That seems so strange to me!

As a loyal follower of Taking Charge of your Fertility, I didn't think it they were necessary. She discusses OPK's but gives off the impression that they are unreliable compared to CM in predicting ovulation and charting BBT to determine the exact day of ovulation. And I have typically had a very predictable pre-ovulation CM pattern with a clear temp why add more expense and stress to this baby making process?

However, when I was discussing my progesterone test results with a nurse at my doctor's office, she clearly didn't trust my temperature and CM charting. She said they typically expect their patients to use OPK's to determine ovulation for 7dpo testing. Ok...

And then there's Chreighton, which I've only heard about through other ladies' blogs. Creighton seems to be all about CM to determine ovulation from what I can tell... (is that right, Find Joy in Every Journey?).

My impressions of these ovulation detecting systems:
My doctor/ western medicine = OPK's
Creighton = CM

I find it fascinating that there are so many theories about determining that elusive ovulation! Which method or combo have you found the most accurate for your body?

Anyway, I am using OPK's this cycle per my doctor's recommendation and to confirm that I have been getting it "right" all these other months (although, I don't think I can be that far "off" since I have such short cycles...). I want to get my progesterone re-tested this cycle, so I will use my regular charting methods plus OPK's to make sure I get the test on that 7dpo mark.


Find joy in every journey said...

Yes, the Creighton Model FertilityCare System is a mucus only method of family planning. It is very accurate for determining days of fertility and infertility.

From personal experience I have had many ultrasounds (probably about 25) and every cycle I had an ultrasound around ovulation, my peak day (day of ovulation) coincided with with the egg being released. It was amazing every time I saw it.

I am a faithful believer that CrMS can accurately identify your time of fertility.

As for OPKs, or fertility monitors, the CrMS is just as effective (and probably cheaper) in the long run.

Most physicians don't know much about identifying days of fertility by charting because it is not taught in medical school and they like to rely on what is the easiest for them to tell their patients to us, thus your Dr. is telling you to use OPK's.

I am a CrMS pratitioner and feel free to email me if you have more questions or want to know more about it.

The best part about CrMS is that slight defects in ovulation can be found and corrected to help you conceive a healthier baby!

For more info:

Amanda said...

I've been lurking for awhile now and I'm coming to give my opinion based on my recent cycle. It appears that the best method for me may be trigger shots and ultrasounds. I would never have really known when I o'd this month with out a u/s. My CM didn't indicate anything, I triggered so my OPKs weren't necessarily helpful, and I didn't get a temp shift till 2 days after. I would do ok w/o the ultrasound, but I'd probably think I ovulated 2 days later than I actually did.

Erica said...

ugh, I always struggled to figure out when I ovulated. For my first 3 IUIs, I had a trigger shot and I swear I didn't actually ovulate until the day after the insemination. OPKs may be accuate, but they didn't help me conceive. The most informative results came when I charted CM and BBT. Have you joined Site is easy to navigate and automatically creates your chart for a small annual fee. Hopefully you'll get some better answers.

Caroline said...

Hi Hillary,
Good luck with finding the right method for you. I'm sorry I can't offer any advice, as I always found ovulation very difficult to predict.

Melissa said...

I don't like OPK's. :) i've been charting for over a year now (ugh, it's been that long!?!). I don't ovulate regularly, but i think it's a good way to see when/about when you've ovulated. I just read TCOYF a few months ago and loved the book. I can see why western doctors aren't into charting, which is irritating, but opk's can be sooo confusing (checking color bands against one another or paying a ton to see a smiley face)

good luck hun!

Anita said...

I used to read TCOMF all the time when we first starting trying. I love it! I pulled it off the book shelf the other day to read the IVF and Endo parts.

I never charted temp because I kept forgetting to take it (i'm not a morning person and found it stressful) but I did pay close attention to my CM and used it to time things. I also used OPK's.

I think knowing our bodies signs is the most helpful but OPK's are helpful backup to use as well.

When I went into the RE a few months ago for a checkup I was on day 22 and pretty certain I was about to ovulate due to lots of CM - I told the RE this and he said it was much to late in my cycle.

He then gave me a ultrasound and said 'oh yeah you are about to ovulate!' I felt like telling him 'I told you so!' :) Doctors really should start paying more attention to charting and take us more seriously!

Good luck wuth the OPKS!

Anonymous said...

oh girl! i think that everyone is different. i would have a shift in temp, but really no change in CM, the US would reveal something totally different. and i would NEVER get a positive OPK, even though I would know that I ovulated.... i was cursing that damn smiley face by the end!

Mary said...

OPK never really worked for me. They were so hard to read. But, I got a Clearblue easy fertility monitor and that seems to be right on the money every month. They're great, but expensive.
I'm SO glad that you are having the test done again! You really are stepping up to the plate to beat the beast of IF, lol. Have you guys discussed the clomid idea any more?

Katie said...

I charted with tcoyf for 4 years and just recently I moved to Creighton and I really like it. It helps to find a Creighton trained doctor, but I suppose all you need is a teacher to explain it to you. I have had more success with the Creighton than anything else (at least in progress of my treatments) No BFP yet.

Katieranck2202 (from TTTC)

Mrs. Hammer said...

I did TCOYF (CM, C position,& BBT) and also paired it with OPK that I took around 11 am to 1 pm. I noticed that a few times I would get a positive OPK for one day but my TCOYF symptoms didn't match up. Then the next day the OPK would be negative. Two day's later it would be positive as well as my TCOYF symptoms showed ovulation.

So the OPK would pick up on LH surges but these surges can be pre ovulation surges. That is why I did all of it so if I was confused by one I'd have a back up. It was helpful for me but may not be for one that feels confident in TCOYF techniques.

Hoping to make it three!! said...

I did both (charted and OPKs) and both showed that I was ovulating around the same time (between CD19-21). I did this for about 10 cycles and then my doc had me get a progesterone test. When the nurse called they just said our test shows you ovulated. Several months later I asked for the specific number and found out it was around a 7. A lot of docs like to see it above 10 so I was annoyed that they said I ovulated when I wasn't sure I did. On my first round of clomid my progesterone was in the 40s. On the second round it was in the 60s and I got pregnant! I'm now 25 weeks along. I hope this helps. From whatI have read you can display all signs of ovulation (cervical mucus, temps, + OPK) and still need help. It certaintly was the case for me.