Fertility Monitors & Test Kits

Archived Q&A and Reviews

Ovulation Monitoring w/fertility problems at 40

Oct 2007

I'm considering buying a OvaCue ovulation monitoring device and am wondering if anyone has any experience with it?? I am 40 and trying for #2 with raising FSH and hx of miscarriages in the last year...I tried some injection meds and did not respond :( We don't have any sperm issues, and I'm hoping with some good monitoring / timing we could get one more good egg to do it's thing :) Anyone with any luck with OvaCue, or anything else that worked, I would appreciate hearin from you! Thanks still holdin onto some hope

I used to work in the fertility field, so I know a lot about this topic. Ovulation monitors are costly and honestly only really *work* if you have a very regular cycle. Ovulation predictor kits (Clearblue easy or Ovu-quick) are more reliable and can be used twice as day, if needed. (However, the best time to use these kits is around noon-2pm, as the hormone they are testing for, LH, spikes in the morning and shows up best in the urine in the early afternoon). The best and most costly and inconvenient way to detect ovulation is through sonogram monitoring. Good luck! former healthcare worker
I didn't have much luck with the OvaCue at all (you're welcome to try mine--email me if interested) but found that the Clearblue Easy Fertility Monitor works very well. I had my son at 40 and have been trying for #2 for about 9 months now (2 chemical pregnancies so far), so I know what you're going through. You might want to try acupuncture, too. Best of luck! peminist
we used the this device that you - lierally- spit on. I can't recall the name of it. It looks like a little mini telescope. Anyway, it worked at 37 for a child and -then - we did IVF and got twins. KM
I had one of the ovulation kits, and tried using it for several months. However, I found that even a slight variation in cycle length (and my cycle length can vary by a week), it was terrible. It seemed to rely on simple counting of days more than anything else. After about six months with it, I abandoned the high tech method and returned to taking my basal temperature every morning. that was MUCH more effective in targeting ovulation in my crazy cycle than any other method, and was much less expensive, too. If you don't know how to take your basal temperature, check with your doctor or a nurse. it's fairly straight forward and only requires a special basal thermometer and a chart. Wishing You Luck
I have long, irregular cycles, so the electronic monitors wouldn't work for me, and I have to test for many, many days each cycle to ''catch'' the LH surge. So, I wrote directly to a manufacturer of the tests, Cortez Diagnostics, and ordered 100 of them at a time for about a dollar each. When the test looked like it would be positive soon, or when I started having ''eggwhite'' cervical mucous, I started LH testing every 12 hours, and intercourse once a day (my husband has a good sperm count and morphology). When the LH tested positive, we tried intercourse every 16 hours.

I found ''Taking Charge of Your Fertility'' to be annoyingly long, to fail to acknowlege the utility of LH surge testing, and overemphasized the utility of basal body temperature testing (only useful to tell you you already ovulated/are still pregnant.)

For me the most helpful ''at home'' techniques were:
1) individual LH test strips for clinical use 2) cervical mucous testing 3) timed intercourse 4) workup by an RE who found another cause of my infertility and then discharged me.
Good luck! Hard-core LH tester

Fertility monitor as contraceptive?

June 2004

I am exploring non-hormonal contraceptive options. Does anyone have any experience with either the Lady-Comp or the Baby-Comp fertility ''computers'', made in Germany? My midwife just recommended it, but they are very expensive and not available in the US yet. I would also be interested to know if anyone had successfully used them before their periods returned (I am breastfeeding my 8- month old and have not yet had a period). Do you know of any other fertility monitors on the market? I know about Persona from England, but it is not suitable for breastfeeding woman. Any advice gratefully received!

I am intrigued by cyclebeads (check out the website at www.cyclebeads.com)as a way to track fertility. They are basically a string of beads with a loop that you move every day. Depending on the color bead that the loop is on, you can tell if it is during your fertile time. It only works for people who have certain length cycles, and if you have had a baby, you have to have 4 periods before you can use it. They claim that it is very reliable- it seems a bit too simple, but definitely non hormonal. don't want to use hormones either

Fertility Monitors - do they work?

April 2004

After looking in the archives, I thought I'd post my question. Have any of you used the ClearBlue (formerly ClearPlan) Fertility monitor with any success? Given the cost, I thought I'd get some opinions before making the investment. If anybody happens to have one that they would consider selling or giving away, I'd greatly appreciate that as well - assuming that you think that they work! Trying to Conceive - again!

I used ClearPlan and it helped me confirm my suspicions that I wasn't ovulating. Didn't actually get the chance to use it once medication got me ovulating, because I got pregnant too soon! However, I'll plan to try it again with #2. Definitely expensive, but for my situation I was glad to have a daily test. Good luck! mom
I swear by it!! My husband and I tried to conceive a baby for 9 months. Then I broke down and bought the clear plan monitor. I was pregnant the next month! Yes, it is expensive, but in the grand scheme of what it costs to raise a child, it's just a drop in the bucket. As for being able to give you mine, I don't have it anymore... I passed it on to someone else! Best of luck. anon.
We tried for a year and a half to get pregnant and I used clearblue for several months in combo with the body temperature method. We could clearly see the time of my ovulation and we were, well, trying a lot ;P Anyways no luck. Then we decided to toss the termometer and the kit and just relax and...poof! Got pregnant and now have a beautiful little girl. I guess it was to much work and stress to time it. good luck! new mum

Saliva test kit for ovulation

August 2003

Have you used a fertility tracking lens, that magnifies the ''ferning'' pattern in your saliva to help you determine your fertile days of the month? I am searching for non-invasive birth control and this sounds a great if little known about option. Did it work for you? Was it easy to use? Do you recommend a specific brand? Thanks.
- Mom who wants to plan baby #2

AKA The Spit Tester

I've got one. I can't remember the brand. A friend bought it for me mail order when it became clear that we weren't conceiving. It resembles a a tube of lipstick. (My husband I always joked that it was the perfectly designed so subtly promiscuous European girls could keep one in their purse and decide whether or not to have unprotected sex.)

Does it work? Not for me. We tested everything and it all looked the same. Now this could be a consequence of my fertility issues, but even if it is, I wouldn't trust it.

If you are looking for non invasive ways to keep track of your fertile times, I strongly urge you to read Taking Charge of Your Fertility, (I think its by Toni Weschler.). Its an amazing book that will teach you how to track your cycle through your temperature, cervical fluid and (if you're really gung ho) your cervical position. IMHO it beats the heck out of the spit tester.

I used the Donna in combination with temperature charting to help me get pregnant with my second. It is easy (even fun) to use, but the ferning pattern was not as obvious as the literature makes it seem. Nonetheless, I would spend the $60 to buy another one if I had it to do over again. Dana
I cannot really remember the name of mine. Maybe the Donna? But it's ok. I would NOT use this for birth control unless you want a baby. Recent info mentions that some women can ovulate twice a month! If you really don't want a baby, use condoms or even an IUD (they work wonderfully). c
I used The Donna Ovulation Tester and found it rather hit and miss. Some months I could see definite ferning which always meant ovulation for me but other months I couldn't see anything. If you'd like to try it, contact me. Since I'm 6 months pregnant with my second and don't plan on anymore, I'd be happy to give you mine. Jennifer

Have you conceived with a fertility monitor?

December 2001

Has anyone used a fertility monitor to conceive? Was it effective? Worth the money? Easy to use? Any helpful hints? Thank you.

I used the ClearPlan Easy fertility Monitor, and do *not* recommend it. It measures more than one hormone level, and because I have an irregular cycle, I was very hopeful that it would help me find the days i ovulate. Well, perhaps my cycle is more irregular than the contraption was programmed for, but in more than nine months of using it as directed, it only detected one ovulation, on which I failed to conceive. It may work wonders for women with a more regular cycle, but it is *very* expensive for the unit and the refills, and it requires you to pee-on-a-stick almost every day. Ultimately, I found the old reliables--basal temperature monitoring and a healthy attraction to my husband--to be the way to go. Good luck!
We used the Clear Plan Fertility Monitor with great success. For us it was wonderful. I have always had a very irregular cycle (ranging from 17-40 days), so it was very useful to know when my fertile time was. The machine tracks the rise of your estrogen as well as your LH (which is the only thing the ovulation kits track). After about a month or two, it is tuned in to your cycle and is very accurate to sense these hormone changes. If you have a regular cycle, you probably will do just as well with either nothing or the ovulation kits, which are more expensive per test, but less expensive if you only need a few tests to know your most fertile time. I started tracking my cycle a number of months before we started trying, and we got pregnant within 4 months. My sister and then my friend also used it. They both got pregnant the first month using it, but they both also had very regular cycles, so it may have had nothing to do with the monitor. The bottom line is if your cycles are irregular, or you have been trying for a while and the other methods are not working, it may be worth thinking about, especially if you plan to have more than one child. I defiantly plan to pull mine out when we start to try again. Feel free to contact me if you want to know more details! ZAlphaWolf
I used one last time around; it was easy to use and for me it worked on the first try.