Agnus Castus not working, luteal phase defect - any thoughts?

Discussion in 'Long Term TTC & Fertility Issues' started by 1sttimer, Nov 14, 2016.

  1. 1sttimer

    1sttimer Well-Known Member

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    Hi all, so I'm 2.5 years in TTC, and 1MC 1 year ago exactly. I chart monthly which is regularly showing an early reduction in BBT so luteal phase is only 6-8 days rather than 12+... I am also having acupuncture which seems to help with stress levels and cycle (have been going for 6 months now) and for the last 3 months my acu lady has put me on Agnus Castus as she hoped it would stop my spotting before AF (usually 3-5 days in length) and up my progesterone levels. It doesn't seem to have had any effect what so ever (currently 3 months in and on day 4 of spotting before AF). I am also on vitamins B6 and high dose (1000mg) Vit C, as well as Folate and EFA's (essential fatty acids) 2-3 tabs a day. I also began with Omnium which is a good all round multivit that she put me on instead of pregnacare.

    The question is, as all I ever see is positive outcomes for Agnus Castus and wondering why it doesn't work for me, what other peoples experiences are?? Anyone out there similar to me? I have regular AF's between 27-30 days, nothing out of the ordinary. Nothing showing up on a HyCosy test etc etc... so no obvious physical problems so it looks to just be a progesterone thing but nothing seems to sort it out!
     
  2. lisey

    lisey Well-Known Member

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    Hi, AC doesn't work for everyone. I used it for spotting, it worked some months and didn't on others. I also had acupuncture.
    Have you had day 21 bloods to make sure you are ovulating? xx
     
  3. 1sttimer

    1sttimer Well-Known Member

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    Hi Lisey! yes, the only problem is when I had my day 21 test it was the month I feel pregnant and subsequently miscarried and even then it wasn't huge but was ok. My acu lady said if it was when I would have been falling pregnant she would have expected it to be higher. My BBT charts would suggest I am ovulating as I do get the bi-phasal temp shift but the temp shift isn't always by much (never more than .5 of a degree if that) which also suggests progesterone deficiency. I'm thinking of getting a progesterone cream but am wary of self diagnosing - Any thoughts? How did you get on with the AC were you on it long?
     
  4. snowbee

    snowbee Well-Known Member

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    I've also used AC with mixed results. My cycles aren't regular though. I took it for 6 months, the first 4 months it gave me a regular cycle but then it either stopped working or it was never working in the first place and was just a coincidence as my cycle suddenly vanished again. I took until I ran out and then didn't bother replacing it.

    So are you ovulating quite late in your cycle if you only have a short LP? Have you had blood tests to see if you ovulate when you think you do?
     
  5. 1sttimer

    1sttimer Well-Known Member

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    Hi Snowbee, thanks for that.

    No further bloods other than my initial day 21 test (see above). I basically went to the docs who ticked some boxes, did some bloods and then passed us straight over to the IVF clinic. They then said everything looks ok carry on for another 8 months before you come back, then we'll do IVF if nothing has happened. They didn't do any further tests other than a HyCosy and took my original bloods from my docs. BBT and OPK's suggest Ov between day 14 - 18, so no not late... just an early drop in temp and then up to a weeks spotting so although I get the AF at the normal time, it's already been breaking down for a good few days before then - BBT can also take a while to increase. My acu lady has told me to stop with the AC now as it doesn't seem to be working, I've been on it 3 months. AC appears to have totally dried up fertile CM too weirdly which apparently is the opposite affect it should have xx
     
  6. lisey

    lisey Well-Known Member

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    I think I was in it for about 6 months ish and then stopped before IVF. I have read mixed reviews about progesterone cream. I was given progesterone suppositories but had to go private in order to get them. I still had spotting some months. I didn't have a luteal phase defect and progesterone bloods were fine but I know my progesterone was dropping too soon.
    Have you had other bloods too, fsh, lh, estrogen just for a fertility check up? Xx
     
  7. lisey

    lisey Well-Known Member

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    I see from your other response that you haven't had the other bloods. I would strongly recommend them, esp before IVF. I have read about b vits helping with luteal phase. I found it caused more spotting for me but worth looking in to? Xx
     
  8. snowbee

    snowbee Well-Known Member

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    If you are oving between 14-18 and having cycles between 27-30 that gives you a LP of 13-16 days, so not short at all. I would ask for bloods to be done again, go 8 days after getting a positive opk. Spotting is often a low progesterone issue, how soon after ov is it starting?
     
  9. 1sttimer

    1sttimer Well-Known Member

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    Thanks - I had them all at the very beginning although couldn't tell you off hand what they were. They did all those before they referred us. We have our IVF review at the end of this month but I was really hoping for one last chance before we had to get into that. All other tests you mention looked ok according to my Acu specialist. I could do with having another day 21 test really but it's whether my GP will do it now we've been referred over.
     
  10. 1sttimer

    1sttimer Well-Known Member

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    It's not the time between that's the issue hun it's the temp - so more to do with the progesterone levels during LP I believe. Would explain my early MC too just not sure how to up it if AC doesn't work and I'm already on everything else. Spotting starting around 4- 5 days before AF.
     
    #10 1sttimer, Nov 14, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2016
  11. lisey

    lisey Well-Known Member

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    Is your LP 13 days but you spot early? If so, you don't have a luteal phase defect, you just have spotting. Could be a progesterone thing or could be nothing. I got pregnant a couple of times naturally with having that problem, didn't work out but not sure reason why. My IVF wasn't because of those reasons. I have low AMH and high FSH. They weren't too concerned about the spotting but let me try the progesterone on natural cycles before IVF because I pleaded with them and it doesn't do any harm, so they let me. I do know how frustrating it is :(
    I would personally continue with AC as it can take 3 months to get working, would want to give it a little longer but I understand you wanting to follow acupuncturist advice xx
     
    #11 lisey, Nov 14, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2016
  12. lisey

    lisey Well-Known Member

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    Also, my acupuncturist told me about a supplement called pregnenelone. Her levels were very low and she said they shot up after taking it. I couldn't take it as not recommended for endometriosis but wanted to pass it on incase you want to look into it xx
     
  13. 1sttimer

    1sttimer Well-Known Member

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    Yeh you're right. Sounds like I'm getting confused between the two. Sorry ladies. I think I might go to the GP and see if they'll recommend the progesterone. I'm tempted to get back on AC now too - ooooh it's soo difficult to know what to do for the best. It doesn't help that this month for the first time ever (since charting and therefore being aware) that I didn't actually ovulate. Temp all over the place, no bi-phasal switch but that's the only time that's ever happened in 7 months so in my head I'm thinking really the AC has only been in effect 2 months. xx
     
  14. lisey

    lisey Well-Known Member

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    No need to apologise. Ttc is confusing when it's not all plain sailings I hope GP offers some help xx
     
  15. 1sttimer

    1sttimer Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Lisey - do you mind me asking, what worked for you in the end? Did you have symptoms with your endo - my sister had severe endo for years and conceived on 3rd and final IVF attempt, but they say from my HyCosy it doesn't look like that's my problem although they cant tell for sure without a Lap. xx
     
  16. lisey

    lisey Well-Known Member

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    Well we conceived 3 times naturally (early miscarriages) and then had IVF, worked first time but it was a rare twin pregnancy that didn't work out. We tried naturally for another year and didn't happen so went for IVF again, we were lucky that worked again and now 15 weeks.
    I did have symptoms with the endo, horrendous period pain, starting a couple of days before period arrived, my periods were very heavy at times too. They said my spotting could be from endo but didn't know for sure. I had a pelvic scan which showed an endo cyst on ovary and that's what confirmed it really. Did have a lap in the end to laser some away. It caused some adhesions so I am not sure if ovaries or tubes got sticky again since the lap as just wasn't happening for us naturally anymore. We didn't have time to keep trying because of my low egg reserve and that's why we went for IVF.
    It's good the hycosy was clear as shows tubes are clear and no scar tissue etc xx
     
    #16 lisey, Nov 14, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2016
  17. snowbee

    snowbee Well-Known Member

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    Your temp will drop in the second half of your LP if you haven't conceived that is normal, it will only stay elevated if you are pregnant. Do you normally get a clear dip before ov then rise after ov? If so that is good.

    I have fairly low progesterone but I've never had spotting. I was worried it had contributed towards our mcs but never had any treatment for it and this pregnancy I've not had my levels monitored so I have no idea how high or low it is.
     
  18. Dovekie

    Dovekie Well-Known Member

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    I started taking it for PMS and got pregnant, accidentally, in the first month. I didn't realise women took it to get pregnant! I was taking one 1000mg tablet per day. My cycles were short before that - 24 days. I stupidly had unprotected sex around my ovulation date, but I believe the ac was involved in some way.
     
  19. 1sttimer

    1sttimer Well-Known Member

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    HI Snowbee, the temp does have a shift but its not huge, my acupuncturist says my temp could do with going higher than it does. And then it's not that it drops at my period it's that it starts dropping a week before which it shouldn't. It's almost as if everything is giving up too early before any egg would even implant if it tried. I'm convinced it's to do with my hormone levels because why would everything drop so early otherwise it should stay raised until a day or two before at least? I think you're right about the MC's too - I think it contributed to mine as I spotted all the way through.
     
  20. phonixgirl

    phonixgirl Well-Known Member

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    Agnus castus made my spotting worse! Maca helps loads though. I don't like the taste so I use the capsules. Xx
     

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