Wednesday, March 24, 2010

TTC: All you ever wanted to know about OPK's

Did you know that you are only fertile 4-5 days in your cycle? And the average couple only has a 25% chance of conceiving every month?

Ovulation Prediction Kits are a great way to increase the odds and have great timing every month. There are many different types and styles available. Unlike pregnancy tests, most OPK's are created equal.
The three types of OPK's I've run into are:

1. Midstream - these are placed right in your urine stream


2. Cassette - usually include a dropper to drop the urine on the cassette


3. Strips - dip in a cup of urine


The cheapest are obviously the strips ($0.50/per) with the most expensive being the midstream ($4.00/per)


OPK's are measuring for what is called the Luteinizing Hormone. This hormone is produced by the pituitary gland and triggers ovulation. For us girls with PCOS, this is where charting can be very helpful. Sometimes your body can produce the LH but ovulation does not happen. The only way to confirm this is through a temperature spike on your chart.


Reading an OPK is not like reading a pregnancy test. A line is NOT a line when it comes to Ovulation Predictors. What a lot people don't know is that the test line must be as dark or darker than the control line to equal a positive.

Have you ever used OPK's? What are your favorite types?

4 comments:

Jen @ After The Alter said...

I never had patience for the line OPK's. I know they are more expensive but I used the digitals, because I never wanted to determine what the line was telling me. (you have to gauge if the new line is darker than the test line) So the smiley always made it easier for me....(CBE digitals)
But...over time i have now moved onto the Clear Blue easy fertility monitor which is more like a computer..very high tech and expensive..but at this point I'm up for anything! lol

Debbie said...

I used those many years ago. Then I moved on to marking it on the calendar. I remember when we where getting married we had to go to PreKana (sp) and they talked about the mucous method...that is the time of the month when you are most fertile...you know it too hence Mucous sorry but it's true. I also was given a weird tip and that was to take robitussin...yes it is suppose to clear the way to let the little guys get to where they need to...it worked...give it try!

Katie said...

In all of the months that I used OPKs, I only got a positive once. I'm not sure if that was because I was using the cheapies (strips) or what. If I ever used them again, I'd upgrade to digitals. Much easier to decipher!

Sarah @ Picture Window said...

So glad you mentioned charting. "Taking Charge of Your Fertility" pretty much changed my life!