Medical Q&As

Ovulation - twice in one cycle?

Is it possible to ovulate twice in the one cycle; once at day 12 and then again at day 19 in a 27-day cycle?

It is possible to release more than one egg in the same cycle but when this occurs it happens within the same 24-hour time span. One or more eggs can be released from one ovary or even one or more eggs can be released from each ovary but it is not possible to release one egg on day 12 and then another on day 19 as suggested in your question. Ovulation or egg release coincides with a surge in oestrogen levels. Once the egg is released progesterone levels rise and the woman’s physiology responds in anticipation of conception and implantation occurring. The endometrium or lining of the womb thickens and is then shed with menstruation should conception and implantation not take place. Therefore once ovulation has occurred in response to the oestrogen surge the woman’s hormone profile alters to a pattern that is not conducive to further ovulation taking place. However, as stated earlier more than one egg can be released within the same 24-hour period in response to the oestrogen surge. This explains the phenomenon of non identical twins, which are produced through the separate fertilisation of two different eggs.