What Are Antral Follicles and How Do They Predict Fertility?

What Are Antral Follicles and How Do They Predict Fertility?

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    When you are trying to conceive or undergoing fertility treatment, it is important to have the right amount of ovarian reserve. In case, the ovarian reserve is very low then it can make it difficult for you to conceive. This is where fertility treatment can help to boost conception chances. Read the guide to learn more about antral follicles.)


    Predicting how many follicles are inside the ovaries, will tell how many eggs are left. But, it is impossible to count the total number as the follicles are very small. But, yes once they reach a certain age it can be predicted by the ultrasound.

    In case, you are undergoing fertility treatment from the best IVF centre then your IVF doctor will also determine the antral follicles so that the required number of eggs can be retrieved from the ovaries.

    How do the follicles grow?

    At the start, they are very small and they are known as primordial follicles. At this point, they are around 25 micrometers and they cannot be seen with the naked eyes. With the hormonal changes in the body, they start to mature. With time, they survive and then move forward to the next stage.

    Once the follicles reach the antral follicles stage they are around 2 to 10 mm in diameter. In this case, they can be seen with the ultrasound. However, if you think you can know the total number of follicles, then it is still not possible. The antral follicles produce a large number of follicles which is known as AMH. By measuring the AMH level it is also possible to determine the ovarian reserve.

    What about the AFC test?

    Antral follicle count is the fertility test which is done through transvaginal ultrasound. With the ultrasound, those follicles will be counted which measures between 2 to 10 mm.

    The ultrasound tech will look at each ovary and count the number of follicles measuring between 2 and 10 mm. The doctor will do a different test which includes:

    • Ovarian reserve is evaluated
    • Primary Ovarian Insufficiency
    • Diagnosing PCOS problem.
    • Evaluating your fertility stands the same as your age.

    How Many Antral Follicles Are Normal?

    Age range Average AFC Lowest AFC Highest AFC
    25 to 34 15 3 30
    35 to 40 9 1 25
    41 to 46 4 1 17

    How many follicles are needed in the IVF treatment?

    During the IVF treatment, the doctor will give you medications to stimulate the follicles in the ovaries. Around 8 to 15 follicles are needed during the treatment.The doctor will retrieve the eggs by using a thin needle and with the help of an ultrasound. The doctor will make sure to retrieve the possible number of eggs because all of them do not have the right quality.

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