What is AMH hormone? Know how it can play important role in reproductive health | Health - Hindustan Times

What is AMH hormone? Know how it can play important role in reproductive health

ByZarafshan Shiraz, New Delhi
Apr 17, 2024 06:46 PM IST

AMH is a vital marker for family planning, offering valuable guidance to both males and females but what is it and how does it impact reproductive health?

AMH, also known as Anti-Müllerian Hormone or Müllerian Inhibiting Hormone, has garnered significant attention in recent years within the realm of reproductive health. Did you know, AMH plays a pivotal role in both male and female genders?

What is AMH hormone? Know how it can play important role in reproductive health (Photo by Endometriosis Excision Surgery)
What is AMH hormone? Know how it can play important role in reproductive health (Photo by Endometriosis Excision Surgery)

In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Dr Arati Adhe Rojekar, Consultant – Gynaecology at PD Hinduja Hospital and MRC in Mahim, explained, “In males, it originates from specialised cells called Sertoli cells, while in females, it is produced by granulosa cells within the ovaries, specifically in the antral or pre-antral follicles. Its concentration in the bloodstream directly correlates with ovarian reserve, making it a valuable tool for predicting menopause or premature menopause. Many gynecologists utilise AMH levels to counsel females on family planning strategies.”

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She elaborated, “Typically, its levels rise initially and plateau around the age of 25, thereafter declining gradually with each menstrual cycle. Optimal fertility is often associated with a blood concentration of around 2 nanograms per milliliter. Elevated levels exceeding 4 nanograms per milliliter may indicate Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), while levels below 1 nanogram per milliliter suggest diminished fertility. Furthermore, AMH serves as a crucial marker for granulosa cell tumours or cancers, highlighting its diagnostic significance.”

Dr Arati Adhe Rojekar revealed, “Notably, AMH plays a pivotal role in both genders. In males, it inhibits the development of female reproductive structures such as the fallopian tubes and uterus. Reduced secretion of AMH can lead to the development of female reproductive organs in males. The emergence of AMH testing holds profound biochemical importance in diagnosing conditions such as bilateral undescended testes, fetal hypogonadism and syndromes like Klinefelter syndrome. Over time, AMH has evolved into a vital marker for family planning, offering valuable guidance to both male and female patients.”

Bringing her expertise to the same, Dr Aswati Nair, Fertility Expert at Nova IVF in Delhi's Rajouri Garden, highlighted, “AMH level is used as a biological marker to evaluate a woman's ovarian reserve, providing insights into the quantity of viable eggs remaining in her ovaries. The hormone is present from day one in females and gradually decreases as menopause approaches. AMH test is redefining the healthcare industry and has emerged as a transformative tool within the health & wellness sector, contributing significantly to women's empowerment and informed decision-making in the realms of family planning and fertility preservation. It plays a pivotal role in promoting proactive family planning and supporting fertility preservation decisions, ultimately contributing to the holistic well-being of women and their reproductive health.”

Talking about AMH and fertility, she said, “The AMH test is an essential diagnostic tool sharing insights about the size of one's ovarian reserve. It includes a simple blood test that can be carried on any day of the menstrual cycle. Low AMH levels indicate a low ovarian reserve and signals avoiding further delay towards conception for aspiring parents. On the other hand, higher AMH levels indicate a larger egg count and a greater outcome of successful pregnancy. However, high AMH levels increase concerns about polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). Hence, an AMH level above 2 ng/ml is preferred indicating a healthy ovarian reserve.”

Given that in family planning precision, the AMH testing has an empowering impact, Dr Aswati Nair pointed out that the impact of the AMH test extends across several key aspects including -

  1. Precision in Assessing Ovarian Reserve: AMH test offers a more precise and direct measure of ovarian reserve compared to traditional methods. This precision assists in assessing a woman's fertility potential more accurately.
  2. Strategic Family Planning: Women contemplating family planning, whether at present or distant future, can benefit from the AMH test. By understanding their ovarian reserve, women can make more informed decisions about the timelines regarding pregnancies by avoiding any underlying health complications or age-related fertility issues.
  3. Optimising Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART): In assisted reproductive technologies like in vitro fertilization (IVF), the AMH test guides healthcare professionals in tailoring treatment plans. It helps determine the appropriate dosage of medications for ovarian stimulation, thereby enhancing the success rates of fertility treatments.
  4. Encouraging open conversations: The availability of the AMH test encourages open conversations between women and their healthcare providers about reproductive health. It fosters a proactive approach to fertility management and facilitates early interventions if needed.

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