Did I Miss My Fertile Window?
OBGYN and fertility expert Dr. Gleaton shares a comprehensive guide on understanding why you aren’t getting positive ovulation test results.
Have you been diligently testing for ovulation, but have not gotten a positive test this cycle?
Negative tests can be frustrating, but before concluding that you’ve missed your fertile window, consider a few other possibilities. The first (and most common reason) is that you may not be testing at the right time. The second is that your body may be experiencing one of many unique LH surge patterns (we don’t all ovulate at the same time!). With just a little detective work and this helpful guide, let’s help understand why you may not see a positive ovulation test result.
When and how often should I test for ovulation?
Let’s start with a brief summary on how ovulation tests work! Basically, an ovulation test is designed to measure your urinary luteinizing hormone (LH) level. When your LH level suddenly spikes, your body is given the signal to ovulate, which is known as your LH surge. So, a positive ovulation test result, or a test line which is as dark or darker than your control line, indicates that you are experiencing your LH surge and within 16–48 hours, you will start ovulating! The graph below shows an example of a common LH level pattern during a 28 cycle. As you can see, the LH surge occurs right before ovulation occurs. So, after receiving a positive ovulation test result, aim to have sex within the next day or so since you are within your fertile window!