Fertility monitor

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A fertility monitor is an electronic device which may use various methods to assist the user with fertility awareness. A fertility monitor may analyze changes in hormone levels in urine, basal body temperature, electrical resistance of saliva and vaginal fluids, or a combination of these methods. These devices may assist in pregnancy achievement.

Luteinizing Hormone (LH) Monitors[edit]

Clearblue Easy (US), Clearblue Fertility Monitor (EU)[edit]

A pregnancy test with a weeks estimator by Clearblue

The Clearblue Easy monitor works by detecting increased levels of luteinizing hormone (LH) in urine collected from disposable urine test sticks. It identifies up to six fertile days per cycle. The manufacturer, Swiss Precision Diagnostics, recommends that it is to be used as a pregnancy achievement aid only.[1]

Persona[edit]

The Persona monitor is a small hand-held device that reads results from disposable urine test sticks to determine when ovulation is approaching and to detect when ovulation has passed. When the urine sample is inserted into the device, the woman's fertility is indicated by means of a red ("fertile") or green ("less fertile") light on the monitor. Persona was originally produced by Unipath, and is now produced by Swiss Precision Diagnostics. It is available only in Europe.[2]

Thermal Monitors (Symptothermal method)[edit]

NaturalCycles[edit]

NaturalCycles, originally from Switzerland, is a new stand-alone mobile and web application that can be used with any conventional basal thermometer to monitor a woman's fertility. As an optional feature, NaturalCycles recommends to take an ovulation test during a few days per cycle. The data is entered by the user into the application and red or green days are returned depending on whether there is a risk of pregnancy or not. The scientifically-tested reliability of NaturalCycles is 99.9%.[3]

Daysy[edit]

The Daysy fertility monitor, designed in Switzerland developed in Germany by Valley Electronics AG,[4] is the newest fertility monitor on the market. With daysy women track their body basal temperature and input menstruation data. Daysy's program relies on the proven software of the Lady-Comp [1] which is successfully on the market since more than 25 years. The menstrual cycle data of daysy can be automatically synchronized to an iPhone App called daysyView.[5]

OvuSense[edit]

The OvuSense system consists of a personal Sensor, placed overnight in the vagina, and a Reader onto which data are downloaded each morning. The Reader provides a daily updated chart detailing relative temperature, and at the end of each month a predicted fertile period for the following month and an analysis of ovulation patterns over previous months. Clinical studies presented at ESHRE 2012 [6] and ASRM 2012,[7] based on the methodology described by Freundl et al. 2003 [8] show comparisons between ultrasound folliculometry (taken as gold standard) and oral temperature. Analysis of these trial data allow the calculation of a quality score for OvuSense versus ultrasound folliculometry and other methodologies, as suggested by Freundl et al. 2003 and a daily probability for fecundity based on a scale described by Colombo and Masarotto in 2000 [9]

DuoFertility[edit]

The DuoFertility system consists of a body-worn sensor, a handheld reader, and computer software. The sensor is worn under the arm like a patch, where it automatically collects up to 20,000 temperature readings per day. The collected data is then transferred to the handheld reader, which stores the data and analyzes it to calculate fertility. The reader is then connected to a computer with the DuoFertility software installed, and the software displays more detailed fertility information. The manufacturer, Cambridge Temperature Concepts, claims that the product is as effective as IVF for patients with unexplained infertility or mild-to-moderate male or female factors.[10] It is marketed as a pregnancy achievement aid only.[11]

Lady-Comp, Baby-Comp, and Pearly[edit]

They take basal body temperature (BBT) and then automatically compare it with its bio-mathematical forecasting software and stored information of all available family planning research (800,000 cycles of other women [2]) - to accurately determine, analyse and display fertile and not fertile days of the individual menstrual cycle. The clinically proven reliability is 99.4% (accuracy equal to the most popular invasive contraceptive methods).[3]. Additionally Baby-Comp was also designed not only as natural birth control monitor, but also as family planning support for couples with conception difficulties with built-in gender predictor and hormonal imbalances, cycles without ovulation and 'Corpus Luteum' deficiency (risk of early miscarriage) recognition.

Lady-Comp and Baby-Comp were designed to handle cycles of varying lengths without posing a safety risk. Both monitors can also efficiently deal with missing or omitted temperature, illness, shift work or irregular sleep pattern (baby) without losing its reliability.

They are manufactured in Germany by VE Valley Electronics GmbH. All devices are tested and CE & ISO-certified medical diagnostic devices. They are also approved as natural contraception / natural family planning device in Europe and as ovulation predictor in the US.

Cyclotest[edit]

Cyclotest Baby and Cyclotest 2 Plus are both sympto-thermal fertility monitors. By measuring basal body temperature (BBT) and menstruation dates it functions as a cyclo-thermic device which can predict fertility.

As an optional addition to BBT and menstruation dates, extra fertility indicators can be recorded, including cervical mucus observations. When the user observes the sticky, egg type cervical mucus a button can be pressed on the cyclotest to record the timing of that event. Likewise, a positive result from an ovulation predictor kit can be recorded. Both of these events are synonymous with ovulation and are usually observed 24–48 hours prior to ovulation. The optional addition of one of these two fertility indicators allows the device to apply the algorithms of the Symptothermal Method.

The manufacturer, UEBE Medical GmbH, claims the Cyclotest 2 Plus has a Pearl Index of 1.0 - 3.0,[12] A study of 207 cycles conducted in 1998 observed that the device requested more abstinence than was necessary at the end of the fertile time in about 12% of the cycles, and thus concluded that more research should be performed on detecting the end of the fertile time.[13] The result of this is therefore a heavier cushion of abstinence at the start of the luteral phase.

Electrolyte Monitors[edit]

Vesta[edit]

The Vesta Fertility Monitor determines the presence or absence of ovulation via measuring the level of salivary potassium, which has a strong correlation with that of LH in the female body,[14] which in turn directly triggers ovulation. The device is claimed to be 99.6% accurate, confirmed by EVPÚ, as stated on the homepage of the website of the device, the second to last item in the list of the features.

OvaCue[edit]

The OvaCue Fertility Monitor is marketed for trying-to-conceive purposes only. It works by measuring the electrolyte composition of saliva to determine approaching ovulation. It is sold with an optional vaginal sensor to retroactively confirm the date ovulation occurred. The manufacturer, Fairhaven Health, claims that this technique has been demonstrated to be 98.3% accurate in predicting ovulation in clinical studies overseen by the National Institute of Health.[15]

Ferning Microscopes[edit]

Women undergo an electrolyte change about three to four days prior to ovulation that persists for two to three days following ovulation. This change can be observed as ferning patterns in her dried saliva upon microscopic examination. Baby Start, Fertile-Focus, Maybe Baby, Ovulens and Aphrodite Test are products which use this technology.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Clearblue Easy Fertility Monitor home page
  2. ^ Persona website
  3. ^ NaturalCycles website
  4. ^ Valley Electronics AG
  5. ^ Daysy website
  6. ^ Human Reproduction ESHRE Abstracts
  7. ^ ASRM 2012 Final Program
  8. ^ Freundl, G.; Godehardt, E.; Kern, P.A.; Frank-Herrmann, P.; Koubenec, H.J.; and Gnoth, Ch. (2003) "Estimated maximum failure rates of cycle monitors using daily conception probabilities in the menstrual cycle" Human Reproduction Vol.18, No.12 pp. 2628±2633
  9. ^ Colombo, B. and Masarotto, G. (2000) Daily fecundability: first results from a new data base. Demogr. Res., 315, Internet edition.
  10. ^ Comparing DuoFertility to IVF
  11. ^ Temperatures rise for Cambridge fertility innovators
  12. ^ Cyclotest 2 Reliability
  13. ^ Freundl, G; Frank-Herrmann, P; Bremme, M (December 1998). "Results of an efficacy-finding study (EFS) with the computer-thermometer Cyclotest 2 plus containing 207 cycles.". Advances in contraception : the official journal of the Society for the Advancement of Contraception 14 (4): 201–7. PMID 10075289. 
  14. ^ Evaluation of Salivary Electrolytes during Normal Menstrual Cycle with Special Reference to Ovulation
  15. ^ http://www.ovacue.com/how-ovacue-fertility-monitor-works

External links[edit]