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The Short Luteal Phase Gang

(299 Posts)
onedaybaby Thu 24-Mar-11 18:20:34


I've noticed that the question about a short LP comes up quite a lot, and I would love it if we had our own thread to discuss where methods we are doing to try to increase it, lengths and what the dr thinks!

My LP is 8 days with a 31 day cycle.

I am currently taking Agnus Castus and have had accupuncture for 2 months. I also use the CBFM.

This will be my 9th month TTC. I have had the 21 day blood test (which has to be done on 28), the day 3 blood test and an ultrascan. All tests are normal.

JulesAbs Thu 24-Mar-11 19:41:08

I'd love to join!

I'm somewhere from 26/29 days with a LP of 8/10

I had a second MCs about 8 months ago and then nothing since.

I'm thinking of giving it another couple of months (if patience prevails) and then going to the doctors for a check up.

We are trying for our first, it's been far more stressful than I ever expected.

onedaybaby Thu 24-Mar-11 20:06:04

Hi JulesAbs,

Thanks for joining. I was worried I would be a billy no mates!

I'm sorry to hear about the MCs. Did the Drs know why they happened? I have read that a short LP can be linked to a higher risk of MC, but as I am sure you have found, the info on the web is very contradictory, particularly on how to lengthen it.

We are trying for our first as well, and I honestly had no idea it would be so difficult to get pregnant. I didn't realise how much had to be taken into consideration (e.g. timings of Ovulation, timings of how long it needs to stick).

I only really started getting broody at the beginning of the year. Before that i was very much career minded. Now, I find every month is more frustrating than the last, and more upsetting. I didn't think I would feel like this - or I guess, didn't realise it would actually take so long to conceive. I also find it is all I can think about, particularly as the weather is getting warmer and there are more mums taking their babies for walks!

Have you tried in the past, or are currently trying and lengthen the LP on your own?

JulesAbs Thu 24-Mar-11 20:14:53

I haven't really started trying too much things, but I was thinking about getting some B6 for next month.

I've only recently discovered my short LP due to finally buying the clearblue fertility monitor. I long for the days when we first started TTCing when it seemed so simple and gadget free.

We've been trying for 1 year and four months now and there are months where I just get so fed up of it all. I never dreamed that it would take this long.

Nice to meet you. It's nice to know I'm not the only one stressing about this. It just seems like one more horrible hurdle after another.

I have tried to cut down on my insistent googling of fertility things as I always come away more panicked than I started.

JulesAbs Thu 24-Mar-11 20:17:49

What day are you on your cycle now? I'm currently on day 24 (and hoping that it will be a longer cycle) as I only ovulated on day 21.

MrsHY1 Thu 24-Mar-11 20:59:00

Oh bugger I just wrote a really long reply and for some reason it hasn't posted!

I will re-draft tomorrow but suffice to say I was saying HELLO, ME TOO, and look forward to chatting to you!

joycep Fri 25-Mar-11 01:45:39

Count me in. I also am on the 6months+ threAd. I have a 10/11 day one. I know not disastrous but believe this is hampering efforts. Started last May for our first. Clockwork cycle with 28/29 days since I was 13. Got pregnant in second month of trying. M/c'd at 7 wks and now in cycle 10 since m/c. Cycles have gone down to 25/26 days which I don't comprehend. I think I have been trying long enough now to warrant a trip to the GP and so will go next week.

Will be keen to hear what all your GPs say. So much contradictory info out there. I have tried B6 and am going into 3rd month of expensive acupuncture but it hasn't extended by one day yet. So frustrating and depressing. Good to know I am not alone!

greenygrassy Fri 25-Mar-11 09:49:06

Hi Gang,

I'm in. My LP ranges from 8 to 11 days. I've been taking Vit B6 for a while now and it does seem to make things a bit better. For the most part it lengthens the phase to 10 to 11 days whereas without it they are 8 to 9 days, but one month with Vit B6 I had a 9 day phase, so I don't really know. I've been trying for almost a year now and had a 6 week m/c in September.

I went to see an NHS consultant a few months ago (for suspected adhesions on m/c ultrasound, which turned out to be nothing) and she said she'd heard of LPD but didn't really know if it was an issue. She did say I could try progesterone, but then said she thought I should try naturally for another six months. I wished I'd asked her for the cream then.

I've got an appointment with a private consultant the week after next, suggested by joycep, (waves to joycep - I seem to be mumsnet stalking you) and I'm going to talk to her about LP and also get the other tests done. I had a 21 day test over a year ago (my GP suggested it before we started ttc as I have polycystic ovaries, but not PCOS) and it came back normal, but I think it was probably taken too early, as I ovulate late in a pretty standard 28 day cycle and at the time I had no idea about lh surges etc.

My poor DH is going to get his test done this weekend and he's really dreading it.

OneDay Are the AC and accu working?

Karbea Fri 25-Mar-11 10:00:25


Ive been tracking for 3 month and my LP has been 11, 7 and I think this month will be 12 (waiting for AF), I seem to have a shorter phase and then a longer phase. We've been trying for 5 months, i'm 37 and so is OH. I'm just about to invest in a clear blue ov monitor and I temp

Ive been taking Prenacare conception for about 6 months and OH takes the male version.

Nice to meet you all! xx

friendlymonkey Fri 25-Mar-11 10:39:24


Nice to meet you all, you all seem so informed about LP and more.

I've been using the CBFM for 18mths on and off as had MC last Sept. Just started to re-use it but then read for the first time about LP, was totally unaware of it. My GP has never mentioned it (thinking about changing docs as she wont test me for anything as she shes I know I can get pregnant because already have been). I find it very confusing, has anyone got any tips on how I can start to find out what mine is??

Joycep my cycles were completely messed up after MC. i had nothing for about 3 months and the 3 periods in 6 weeks. GP said it was normal but ver frustrating still. Now I'm seeing a reflexogist and the day after my first course I had a period so I think there getting back on track (early days tho). Cycle is about 42 days, long but some site say can be normal?

I do want to start temp checking but also feel like giving up. I have no energy for bedroom business any more.

joycep Fri 25-Mar-11 17:47:28

Hey greengrassy, that's great you have got an appt with Sarah! I will get one once I'm back from hols. Shame about the insurance. As you have poly ovaries you should be able to get referred for that rather than TTC. Anyhow I am sure I will have to pay as well. Let me know how you get on with her. She is suppose to be proactive.

It's odd I do feel my m/c has rendered me infertile but I hope i am imagining it .

onedaybaby Sat 26-Mar-11 09:08:07

Good morning!

Typical, weather has been lovely all week and today its not :-(

JulesAbs, today is day 17, and I am expecting to get highs on my CBFM from day 20 onwards. I feel that I spend most of the month waiting - waiting for my period to end, waiting for ovulation day, then waiting for period to come. The length between my period and OD is sooo long.

Hi MrsHY1, Joycep and Greenygrassy.

Joycep, have you seen any difference yet since starting the acupuncture? Where possible, I am having a session once a week. My period pattern is a week of heavy spotting, and then a week of period. This month, my week of spotting was much much less, while the period was heavier. I am hoping that soon (as it is very expensive), the spotting will stop and I will just get a week period. If there was no spotting, my LP would be about 14 days.

I am going to the Drs again next week to see if I can have something to encourage earlier ovulation - its a 10-13 day gap between the end of my period and O, so I'm keen to discuss what can be done. I strongly suspect that nothing can be done further until we reach the 12 month mark. I am slightly worried that the results of the acupuncture may be affected if the Dr prescribes anything, but I'll cross that bridge next week as I doubt the Dr will be able to do anything next week.

The 12 month mark does annoy me. Even though we have evidence of consistent findings, its always got to be 12 months of TTC first. Why? Its very unlikely that patterns are going to change on their own during this time, and I feel that it is such a waste of time. I read the other day that you only get 12 goes at conceiving a year - and when I read that, it brought me up short. A whole year of time spent on 12 days!!! I feel there's no hope!! LOL!!

Greenygrassy, I take 2 tablets of AC in the morning and evening. I don't know if it is that or the acupuncture that made the changes in my bleeding. I certainly haven't seen any difference in my LP yet, but this is my second month on the AC so maybe I will see an extra day or too this month in the LP. I didn't want to take Vit B6 yet on my own as I read that too much is very bad for you, and I couldn't find solid information to state how much is to be taken. What are you taking? How long did it take before you saw the extra day or two? Why did the nurse mention progesterone cream?

Hi Kerbea. We take those tablets too - DH is very good at reminding me if I haven't forgotten. I think he likes to feel he is helping! I think the CBFM is worth having; it makes me feel better to know that I am O, even if its the wrong time!

We also use ConceivePlus. I do sometimes think I should listen to people who say I am stressing too much about this, and that this isn't a military operation!!!

Hi Friendymonkey. The LP is the number of days between the day you ovulate and the first day of your next period. The average is 14 days, but this is average, as the LP can be shorter or longer. The longer the phase, the better as it gives the egg more time to embed. However, a shorter phase can still be enough time, so we shouldn't keep thinking that we "must have 14 days".

Phew! What a long post, but I am so happy that I have found some girls in the same boat as me.

Have a great weekend everyone!! xxx

friendlymonkey Sat 26-Mar-11 12:55:13

Thanks onedaybaby, I better look more when I ovulate I think by taking temp as I dont think relying on the CBFM is enough.

dzudzi Sun 27-Mar-11 16:25:51

Hello, you all seem to know a lot about this and I would really appreciate some information. My cycle is usually between 21 and 24 days but it's been exactly 22 for the last year and I seem to get my period 7 days after I ovulate. The gynaeocologist keeps telling me this is normal and nothing to do with why I haven't been able to get pregnant after trying for nearly two years, but I keep reading that a 7-day luteal phase is not normal and would make it more difficult to get pregnant.
I live in Madrid, and although I can speak Spanish fine, I find that it tends to be difficult to get busy (and normally impatient) doctors to listen and explain things to me. Every time I ask about anything they just basically go "it's normal, it's normal, your tests are fine, keep trying and if you're not pregnant in another three months we'll x-ray your uterus, which will hurt. Goodbye". I'm 34 and we've been getting tests and things done since last August.
Thanks! x

MrsHY1 Sun 27-Mar-11 20:31:26

Dzudzi - there is an awful lot of conflicting information out there. Some people say it's an issue, and some don't. I can't help feeling that even though pregnancy is possible because implantation can happen 5 days after ovulation, it doesn't make it easy because implantation can also happen as late as day 12.

Can you get a second opinion? I don't know the Spanish healthcare system at all but in your case it doesn't sound fun!

I really wish you good luck though. Stay in touch on this forum and we can all help each other! x

joycep Tue 29-Mar-11 00:16:06

Hey onedaybaby. Tbh I don't think acupuncture has done anything yet. I was told I had an 80% chance of having a 12day LP after a few months. I have a session This wk and this will be my 3rdmonth and last month i went back down to 10 day lp. My periods were becoming very clotty (sorry tmi) and I noticed it was much better this one but they change from month to month so not sure if that is to do with acu. Clotty is bad so I prefer to clear that up. In that taking charge of fertility book, it sAys you dont count the days you spot but I understand why you want to clear it up. Let me know what your GP says. I refuse to wait the whole 12 months - I think once you get into your 30s you don't want to wait too long.
Hey dzudzi, I think you need to find a different gynae. My friend wAs told she couldn't get pregnant with a 7 day LP as in it is not enough time for implantation. As Mrshy says there is a lot of conflicting info but I am sure people have but I would think it is harder. Also, I have read that a cycle under 23/24 days should be looked at as well. As well as all the blood tests, have they checked the womb lining to check it is in phase etc etc?

dzudzi Tue 29-Mar-11 05:14:26

Hello, thanks for the ideas. I'll try and find out if I can speak to a different gynaecologist. Whenever I ask for more information about anything they tend to treat me like I'm being a stupid foreigner who doesn't speak the language well enough rather than a normal person who isn't a doctor and wouldn't necessarily understand the medical speak in any language. Joycep, what is that about the womb lining? I've not heard about that before and no, I don't think they've checked it, they just did a blood test at the beginning of my period. Is there anything else they could be checking? The next test I have to get is the one where they check if your tubes are blocked but I don't see why they would be and I wish I could get them to at least explain how they know that my periods are "normal" first.
Thanks again x

joycep Tue 29-Mar-11 14:17:43

Hey Dzudzi, sorry you're having difficulty. It's bad enough getting good treatment in one's own language so it sounds like you're having a nightmare. Have you only had a blood test at the beginning of your period - was that all normal? That tests LH and FSH. You should most certainly have a progesterone test as well, 7 days after ovulation. This may show something considering your period is coming 7 days after ovulation. You really need to be assertive about this - because I know i'm not a doctor but 7 day LP doesn't sound right and can probably be easily treated. You need to firstly know whether you're ovulating. If you are, then they need to find out why your period is coming so early. There can be several reasons for this and it may not just be down to one factor. This is oneo f the most useful articles I have found on Luteal Phase Defect. It explains everything pretty well.

The womb lining thing I was mentioning was an endometrial biopsy, it explains it in that article. But before this, they should also check your follicle size before ovulation. This is done by ultrasound.

If they're offering to check your tubes, you might as well get them checked to rule that out as a problem. You can then just start ruling things out. But that is a completely separate issue to LPD.

dzudzi Tue 29-Mar-11 15:15:19

Thanks so much. Yes, my original test was all normal apparently. I thought I should be getting a progesterone test and I tried to be assertive but I ended up getting so nervous because I didn't know the stupid medical terminology in Spanish that I pretty much had a panic attack so the gynaecologist was like "you're clearly a nervous person, that's probably why you can't get pregnant" and I was like "I am NOT a nervous person, I am a person who's a bit nervous in THIS SITUATION, and if you had any kind of empathy you'd be able to understand why." And then when me and my man were referred to the sterility specialist it turned out to be the same bloody doctor. She was like "oh hello, you're the nervous one, less nervous today?" so I was just like "oh god, you're not even going to bother listening to anything I say now, you'll just think I'm being neurotic." And of course there wasn't any point in asking anything along the lines of "you know that thing you told me was normal before? Have you come across any ground-breaking new research in the meantime to challenge that opinion, or are you still going with normal?" and yet again I spent a week kicking myself for not getting the information I wanted and having to wait another three months for the next goddamn appointment. I don't know anyone who's been through this either here or in the UK, so I don't know what the procedures are and have no idea what information I can trust on the internet, so I'm feeling very lonely and afraid that I'm missing out on the chance to have something that might be very easy to fix fixed, and it's SOOOOOO BLOOOOODY FRUSTRAAAAAAATING!!! AAAAAAARGH!

So I really appreciate your help. Thank you x

blueberryboybaitonSafari Tue 29-Mar-11 15:29:54

I had a very short LP of 3-5 days and found the only way of getting things done was to play the system slightly. I knew I had a 32 day cycle so my day 21 test should have been on day 25 but I did as I was told and had it on day 21 it showed no ov. and I was referred to the fertility clinic at the hospital, when I spoke to the consultant and told him what was going on explained the CBFM results etc. He agreed my LP was too short to possibly conceive anything under 11 day he said may cause problems. I was prescribed Clomid to boost ovulation and make it happen earlier in the cycle. When I spoke to him he understood the LP issue but none of his registrars/House Officers knew what I was talking about and I had to explain to them about conception occuring but there not being sufficient hormone produced to prevent my period starting as it hadn't implanted and in a 11-14 day LP there is enough time for hormones to be produced and prevent a period starting resulting in a susccessful pregnancy. The clomid did increase my LP to 14 days.

dzudzi Tue 29-Mar-11 15:55:50

It's good that they listened to you, every time I try asking the doctors here about stuff like that they just give me a withering look and tell me not to believe everything I read on the internet and make me feel like a idiot. I'm not an idiot, but to them I'll always be a foreigner and therefore probably a bit stupid, and the slightest suspicion that I might be coming across as an idiot makes me trip over my Spanish words and sound like I don't know anything and can't communicate. It's difficult to play the system when the system conspires to make you look like a fool.

I'm starting to think I might just have to visit a loan shark and go to a private gynaecologist who speaks English, which is quite annoying because my Spanish is actually pretty good. Also I suppose there's always the danger that my linguistic skills would desert me in that stressful situation too and I wouldn't even manage to explain to the loan shark that I would like to borrow some money please.

blueberryboybaitonSafari Tue 29-Mar-11 15:59:48

Dzudzi - I have heard from friends in Spain that the doctors over there are still very backwards in their thinking about fertility, pregnancy and childbirth. She struggled for years over there, came to London on a holiday and made an appointment with a fertilty specialist for whilst she was here and was relieved to hear she wasn't nuts or imagining things.

joycep Tue 29-Mar-11 16:14:11

Dzudzi - is there anywhere you can get a recommendation for a gynae where you are living...perhaps one who can speak English as well? Perhaps post a message somewhere on MN to see if someone has used one? Your one sounds a bit hopeless to be honest or she is fobbing you off. But if you have been trying for 2 years, they should have done a progesterone test at least! So that's the next thing to get done. Depending on what those results are then you can go forward.

dzudzi Tue 29-Mar-11 16:22:51

Yeah, I'll ask around, thanks. I heard that fertility treatment was meant to be pretty good here but it isn't turning out that way for me. How much time do you need to do stuff in the UK? I have a month off in the summer. Is it reeeeeally expensive?

joycep Tue 29-Mar-11 18:02:17

Yes I thought fertility treatment in Spain was suppose to be good but then again i think that's more for IVF. I think once it gets to that point - you know you need a good place that does IVF with good results. Before that it seems to be a minefield of things to test for as there are numerous things that could be wrong - some of the issues could just require simple treatment but it's pot luck as to how good a gynae you get and their level of care and interest. It's the waiting times for everything that is so daunting as well.
I'm sure you could get preliminary blood tests done within the month - depending on where you are in your cycle but you should have done those by then. It takes time though it hink to track folicles and to find out what the issue is. Going private is expensive unfortunately. I am going to try and get a referral to someone private tomorrow and it's going to be 300 for one hour...god knows what it costs after this.

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