Evaluate the effects of estrogen, testosterone, and progesterone on the reproductive system, taking into consideration the impacts of too much or too little of these hormones.

Quick answer:

The effects of estrogen and progesterone are changes in the uterus in preparation of receiving a fertilized egg. Too much or too little of these hormones can cause menstrual cycle problems as well as a loss of sex drive and abnormal bleeding.

Expert Answers

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Estrogen and progesterone are instrumental hormones for the female reproductive system. Besides helping to develop secondary sex characteristics, the hormones are crucial for the preparation and maintenance of the uterus for sustaining an embryo.

Starting with menstruation, estrogen and progesterone levels are very low. As menstruation ends, estrogen levels begin to rise. The increasing levels of estrogen cause changes in the uterus. The lining of it begins to grow and thicken because it is preparing to receive a fertilized egg. At about day 14 of the menstrual cycle, estrogen levels peak, and a surge of FSH and LH happen as well. Those hormone levels fall off shortly after, and progesterone levels increase. Progesterone maintains the walls lining the uterus; however, without a fertilized egg, the hormone levels decrease and the lining of the uterus is shed.

Estrogen and progesterone levels can vary, and problems do occur if their levels are too high or too low. If levels are too low, that can cause irregular menstrual cycles, abnormal bleeding, or the cycle can stop completely. Too much estrogen can cause heavy bleeding during menstruation. Too much or too little of these hormones can causes changes in a woman's sex drive as well. Fatigue, dry skin, and headaches are common signs and symptoms of abnormal hormone levels, too.

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