Follicle Stimulating Hormone

The follicle-stimulating hormone produced by the pituitary gland plays an essential role in the production and release of eggs.

Follicle-stimulating hormones (FSH) are called gonadotropins because they stimulate the gonads and control the sexual and reproductive characteristics in both male and females.

Follicle-stimulating hormones are glycoprotein gonadotropin secreted by the pituitary gland. It is the most essential hormone for the development of secondary sexual characteristics and the function of women’s ovaries and men’s testes.

Functions Of Follicle Stimulating Hormone

Follicle-stimulating hormones stimulate the maturation of primordial germ cells in both males and females. Other functions of follicle-stimulating hormones are:

In women:

  • It initiates follicular growth.
  • It controls the menstrual cycle.
  • It also increases oestradiol production.
  • It stimulates the ovary to produce an egg.
  • It regulates the development, growth, development of secondary sexual characteristics and reproductive processes.
  • This hormone stimulates the growth of ovarian follicles in the ovary before the release of an egg from one follicle at ovulation.

In men:

  • It secretes androgen-binding proteins (ABPs) from Sertoli or “nurse” cells. T
  • This hormone acts on the “nurse” cell of the testicles to stimulate sperm production and the process is called spermatogenesis.

Hormonal Levels

The level of FSH in women varies during the menstrual cycle and there will be an increase in the level just before she releases an egg (ovulates).

The hormonal level usually varies with the person’s age and sex.

High FSH levels in boys or girls may mean that puberty is about to start.

The normal value of FSH in male:

Before puberty – 0 to 5.0 mIU/mL.

During puberty – 0.3 to 10.0 mIU/mL.

Adult – 1.5 to 12.4 mIU/mL.

The normal value of FSH in female:

Before puberty – 0 to 4.0 mIU/mL.

During puberty – 0.3 to 10.0 mIU/mL.

Women who are still menstruating – 4.7 to 21.5 mIU/mL.

After menopause – 25.8 to 134.8 mIU/mL.

High FSH levels in women

The main causes for the increase in the production of FSH are:

  • Turner syndrome.
  • After menopause.
  • Hormone therapy.
  • Presence of tumour in the pituitary gland.

High FSH levels in men

  • Hormone therapy.
  • Advancing age (male menopause)
  • Certain tumours in the pituitary gland.
  • Problems with genes, such as Klinefelter syndrome.
  • Damage to testicles caused by alcohol abuse, chemotherapy or radiation.

Low FSH levels in women

  • Not producing eggs.
  • Underweight or rapid weight loss.
  • Non-functioning of the pituitary gland or hypothalamus.

Low FSH levels in men

Non-functioning of the pituitary gland or hypothalamus.

What is the FSH test?

The FSH test is mainly used to measure the level of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) in a blood sample.

Why is the FSH test used?

This test is mainly used to diagnose the causes of infertility and the procedure is carried out in both a man and a woman. Other uses of this test include:

  • Amenorrhea.
  • Ovarian failure.
  • Pituitary adenomas.
  • Reason for a low sperm count.
  • Causes of early menopause.
  • A chromosomal abnormality.
  • Early or delayed puberty in children.

This article concludes the introduction to the Follicle Stimulating Hormone, their functions, disorders caused by their level of production and their symptoms.

To know more about the follicle-stimulating hormone, their types, functions, other related topics and important questions, keep visiting our website at BYJU’S Biology.

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