Progesterone and the luteal phase: a requisite to reproduction

Obstet Gynecol Clin North Am. 2015 Mar;42(1):135-51. doi: 10.1016/j.ogc.2014.10.003. Epub 2015 Jan 5.


Progesterone production from the corpus luteum is critical for natural reproduction. Progesterone supplementation seems to be an important aspect of any assisted reproductive technology treatment. Luteal phase deficiency in natural cycles is a plausible cause of infertility and pregnancy loss, though there is no adequate diagnostic test. This article describes the normal luteal phase of the menstrual cycle, investigates the controversy surrounding luteal phase deficiency, and presents the current literature for progesterone supplementation during assisted reproductive technologies.

Keywords: ART; Luteal phase; Luteal phase deficiency; Luteal phase support; Progesterone.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Chorionic Gonadotropin / therapeutic use
  • Estradiol / therapeutic use
  • Female
  • Fertility Agents, Female / therapeutic use*
  • Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone
  • Humans
  • Infertility, Female / drug therapy
  • Infertility, Female / etiology
  • Infertility, Female / physiopathology*
  • Luteal Phase / drug effects*
  • Luteinizing Hormone / deficiency*
  • Luteinizing Hormone / metabolism
  • Pregnancy
  • Progesterone / therapeutic use
  • Reproductive Techniques, Assisted*


  • Chorionic Gonadotropin
  • Fertility Agents, Female
  • Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone
  • Progesterone
  • Estradiol
  • Luteinizing Hormone