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Progesterone (P4)

Progesterone (P4)

Test ID: A855

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Progesterone (P4) is a female sex hormone, which is essential during pregnancy and also in other roles, including bone formation and blood flow. Abnormally low progesterone occurs in females whom have disorders of ovulation, and is associated with infertility, spontaneous abortion, and ectopic pregnancy. Low progesterone around menopause also contributes to many of the symptoms occurring during this period, but can be effectively treated with oral progesterone.



How to order a test

What is Included?

Measurement of progesterone levels by chemiluminescent microparticle immunoassay.

Turnaround Time

1 – 3 business days
The turnaround time is not guaranteed. The average turnaround time is 1 – 3 business days from the date that the sample arrives at the laboratory. Shipping time for the sample is not included. Additional time is required if the case requires confirmatory or reflex testing, or if the sample is insufficient, or if a recollection is required.

Related Documents

Additional Information and Resources


Preparation Before Specimen Collection

For females, wait until at least three months after the cessation of hormonal contraception or hormonal replacement therapy before collecting your blood sample for this test.

For females who are currently still menstruating, collect your blood sample about halfway through the luteal phase for the best assessment of your progesterone levels. For females with regular cycles, this is typically seven days before your next expected period. For females with irregular cycles, it may be necessary to detect ovulation (either through physical changes such as mucus or basal body temperature changes or with ovulation test strips) and then collecting your blood sample 5–7 days after ovulation.

Specimen Type



50 μL in a microtainer


Microtainer (regular blood tube)

Collection Method

This test requires a blood sample from a finger prick. All supplies for sample collection are provided in the kit.

  1. First wash and dry hands. Warm hands aid in blood collection.
  2. Clean the finger prick site with the alcohol swab and allow to air dry.
  3. Use the provided lancet to puncture the skin in one quick, continuous and deliberate stroke.
  4. Wipe away the first drop of blood.
  5. Massage hand and finger to increase blood flow to the puncture site. Angle arm and hand downwards to facilitate blood collection on the fingertip.
  6. Drip blood into the microtainer tube.
  7. Dispose of all sharps safely and return sample to the laboratory in the provided prepaid return shipping envelope.

NOTES: Avoid squeezing or ‘milking’ the finger excessively. If more blood is required and blood flow stops, perform a second skin puncture on another finger. Do not touch the fingertip.

Specimen Storage

Maintain specimen at temperatures between 2°C and 30°C during storage and transport.

Specimen Stability

Blood samples can be refrigerated or kept at room temperature for up to 7 days.

Causes for Rejection

  • Incorrect or incomplete patient identification
  • Incorrect specimen collection
  • Inappropriate storage and transport conditions
  • Incorrect specimen volume



To measure progesterone levels in a blood sample, particularly to monitor hormone levels during postmenopause.


  • This report is not intended for use in medico-legal applications.
  • These results should be interpreted in conjunction with other laboratory and clinical information.
  • Correct specimen collection and handling is required for optimal assay performance.
  • Assay interference may occur in specimens from individuals routinely exposed to animals or to animal serum products. Additional clinical or diagnostic information may be required for these specimens.
  • False results may occur in specimens from individuals that have received preparations of mouse monoclonal antibodies for diagnosis or therapy. Additional clinical or diagnostic information may be required for these specimens.


Chemiluminescent microparticle immunoassay (Alinity i Progesterone assay)

Reference Intervals

Normal menstruating females
– Follicular phase: < 0.5 ng/mL
– Luteal phase: 3.0 – 25.0 ng/mL

Postmenopausal females: < 0.4 ng/mL

Pregnant females
– First trimester: 7.25 – 44.0 ng/mL
– Second trimester: 19.5 – 82.5 ng/mL
– Third trimester: 65.0 – 229.0 ng/mL

Males: 0.1 – 0.5 ng/mL

These reference ranges were obtained from Pagana KD, Pagana TJ, Pagana TN. Mosby’s Diagnostic & Laboratory Test Reference. 15th ed. St. Louis, Mo: Elsevier; 2021.