Some science behind the scenes

FSH and LH

The two hormones follitropin (FSH), and lutropin (LH) are central to the complex endocrine system that regulates normal growth, sexual development, and reproductive function. The hormones LH and FSH are secreted by the anterior pituitary gland.

  • In men, FSH is critical in the production of sperm.  There is a process called  Spermatogenesis by which male primary sperm cells undergo a series of changes until they develop into properly mature spermatozoa, also known as sperm cells.  FSH is key to this process.  If you do not have enough FSH you get ‘gonad failure’!  Castration causes high levels of FSH because the feedback mechanism is absent – there is no feedback and it leads to unrestricted FSH production .
  • In women, FSH is key in ovulation – the production of eggs, so in a sense FSH causes an equivalent process to the production of sperm in men. FSH levels can become very high during the menopause because the hormone continues to be released even though there are no eggs to release.

In effect, if we want to have enough healthy sperm and eggs we need a proper supply of FSH.