Advanced Female Fertility Tests - Leukocyte Antibody Detection (LAD)

A leukocyte antibody detection (LAD) test is a comprehensive female infertility test that can be helpful in establishing the causes as to why a couple is experiencing problems getting pregnant. This female fertility test is a simple blood test that can assess whether cells known as leukocytes are the cause of female infertility and can help to establish the most appropriate method of infertility treatment.


What Are Leukocyte Antibodies?

Leukocyte antibodies are cells located within the body that attack white blood cells (leukocytes) that are found in the blood, bone marrow as well as lymphatic tissues. While these antibodies usually attack foreign bacteria that can be harmful to an individual’s health, leukocyte antibodies can sometimes target fetal cells during pregnancy, thereby resulting in pregnancy loss.

As such, the body produces leukocyte antibodies in order to counteract this process.

Leukocyte antibody cells are typically found in individuals receiving blood transfusions, in individuals receiving donated organs and in pregnant women.


Leukocyte Antibodies and Infertility

Low levels of leukocyte antibodies have been linked to infertility in women. In fact, women with below average levels of these cells are at greater risk for:


  • miscarriage
  • stillbirth
  • recurrent, spontaneous abortion


Leukocyte Antibodies Detection Procedure

A leukocyte antibody detection test is a blood test that is usually performed at a fertility clinic. A blood sample is drawn and then sent to a specialized lab for analysis, with results typically becoming available within a week.

Individuals who benefit most from this type of infertility test include women who have experienced or are experiencing:


  • unexplained infertility
  • multiple miscarriages
  • continual failure with in vitro fertilisation (IVF)


LAD Test Results

Normal results for a leukocyte antibody detection test means that you have tested positive for leukocyte antibodies, which are present at levels of above 50% in your body.

Borderline normal test results indicate that you have leukocyte antibodies present in your bloodstream but that they are present in lower quantities (30 to 50%).

Abnormal levels are defined as very low quantities of leukocyte antibodies, defined as less than 30%.

If you have abnormal leukocyte antibodies levels, the main treatment option is leukocyte immunization therapy (LIT), which increases these levels through the injection of white blood cells (provided either by your partner or by a donor) so as to increase the number of antibodies in your bloodstream. This will usually help to increase levels so that pregnancy can be maintained.