The role of reproductive hormones in the menstrual cycle

A hormone is a chemical substance, produced by a gland and carried by the blood, which alters the activity of specific target organs (and is then destroyed by the liver).

Different hormones affect different organs or cells.

Hormones and the glands that produce them in the human body

The menstrual cycle and hormones

Greg Foot describes the interaction of FSH, LS, oestrogen and progesterone in the menstrual cycle

The menstrual cycle is a recurring process that takes around 28 days. During the process, the lining of the uterus is prepared for pregnancy. If implantation of the fertilised egg into the uterus lining does not happen, the lining is then shed. This is known as menstruation.

Several hormones control this cycle - for example, they are involved in controlling the release of an egg each month from an ovary, and changing the thickness of the uterus lining.