I've went to see on other threads with "progesterone level" as title, but didn't found all the infos I was looking at.
I would like to know, when you have a mare that is deemed by the vet as at a "low progesterone level"... What does that means? What is a LOW level compared to a NORMAL level, and what is like, the dangerous range?
Is 4.9 ng/ml scary enough to have the mare stay at the vet's clinic and avoid transporting her back home? For how long can it stays that low? Can it stays forever at that level?
What is to be done to solve this problem? Treatment? Medication? Hormonal treatment? Wich products are commonly used with success. I know of Regu-Mate but is there more agressive treatments available?
Is it reccurrent? If a mare has a low progesterone level once, will she be always low each subsequent pregnancy?
If the mare has to be shipped let's say... 4hrs drive. At what level would you consider it safe to have the mare transported, assuming that she is more than used to trailering and travels pretty well usually?
What can interfere with natural progesterone production? Environnement? Nutrition? Travelling?
Take a look at the article on our site about Regumate use, which should answer a lot of your questions (follow that link).
The short answer to the question "what are low progesterone levels?" is... we don't know! 4 ng/ml is used as a "low" threshold by many (which means that your 4.9 is totally adequate); while other researchers have reported pregnancies happily maintained on levels down to around 2 ng/ml.
On top of that, as with most hormones in the body, a single sample will not necessarily give you a complete overall profile, as testing again 3 hours later is quite likely to give you a higher or lower reading, as levels vary throughout the day and night. Multiple tests over several days are therefore recommended to give an accurate profile.
The progesterone level would be less of a concern when shipping - particularly with a 4.9 reading - than ambient temperature, as excessively high temperatures during the early embryonic period have been linked to a higher pregnancy loss rate. Increasing that temperature within a hot trailer could therefore spell more trouble than a borderline progesterone level could (which, again, your mare at 4.9 ng/ml does not have!).
Finally, after all of that preamble, you don't identify at exactly what stage of "early pregnancy" your mare is! Progesterone levels will drop to a low point around 15 days post-conceiving-ovulation and then start to rise again, so that may play a part in your levels as well.
Wouldn't be concerned. We breed a huge number of outside horses here (as well as our own), have excellent pregnancy rates, and have maybe one or two mares a year that get put on progestin supplementation - and that will be because they have a known issue such as a torn cervix or something like that.
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