Is late ovulation a problem? Will it keep me from getting pregnant?
Late ovulation is usually ovulation that happens after cycle day 20-21. So a menstrual cycle length longer than 34-35 days means usually that you are ovulating late.
What are the possible consequences of late ovulation?
- With too-late ovulation, you may be releasing eggs that have not matured properly and may be too old. Improperly matured eggs ("bad eggs") are not as good for fertilization and implantation as eggs that have matured properly. These eggs either do not get fertilized or if they get fertilized, they are less likely to implant.
- Hormone levels are not in sync when eggs mature late, which can further decrease the chance of getting pregnant.
- The lining of the uterus (endometrium) needs to be ready for the fertilized egg to implant. If ovulation is delayed, the lining of the uterus may not be ready for implantation when too much time has passed since the last menstrual period. The egg may have become fertilized but the fertilized egg may arrive in the uterus too late so it cannot implant properly because the lining is not appropriate. The uterine lining may atrophy from the length after the last period and the embryo may not have the same kind of support from the endometrium and therefore have an increased risk of miscarriage.
- There is no reliable information on a possible relationship between late ovulation and fetal anomalies. So if the embryo implants after late ovulation, there is no known study showing increased risks of fetal malformations.