Before testing for infertility, your doctor or a fertility clinic may try to help you get pregnant by learning more about your sexual history. However, for some pairs unable to conceive, doctors can’t pinpoint an underlying cause (unexplained infertility).
Evaluation for infertility can be time-consuming, distressing, and costly. All health insurance plans may not cover fertility treatment costs. After all the tests and guidance, there is still no certainty that you will conceive.
Tests for men’s fertility
Male fertility depends on healthy sperm being ejaculated into the vagina and reaching the egg. Male infertility tests assess these processes.
A general physical exam may include a genital inspection. Fertility testing includes:
- Semen analysis.
- Hormone testing.
- Genetic testing.
- Testicular biopsy.
- Another specialty testing.
Tests for women
Ovaries release healthy eggs for female fertility. Eggs must enter the fallopian tubes and meet sperm for fertilization. In addition, fertilized eggs must implant in the uterine lining. Female infertility tests check these mechanisms.
- Ovulation testing.
- Ovarian reserve testing.
- Another hormone test.
- Imaging tests.
Infertility therapy depends on the following:
- Infertility’s cause
- Infertility duration
- Your partner’s age
Assisted reproductive technology can help couples conceive when spontaneous conception fails. Infertility therapy can be costly, physically, psychologically, and time-consuming.
Treatment for men
Men’s sexual health treatment may include:
- Changing lifestyle.
You can improve your lifestyle and increase your chances of getting pregnant by cutting back on or getting rid of certain substances, having more and better sexual encounters, staying healthy, and making the most of other things that might hurt your fertility.
In some cases, medicine can increase sperm count and the probability of a healthy pregnancy. These drugs have the potential to improve testicular health and sperm quality.
When surgery is an option, it can unblock sperm and restore fertility in some cases. But in some cases, the overall fertility rate can be raised by having a varicocele surgically fixed.
- Sperm retrieval.
When ejaculating is complex or there is no sperm in the ejaculate, these methods can be used to collect sperm. In circumstances where sperm counts are low or aberrant and ART is being considered, they may also be used.
Treatment for women
One or two treatments may be sufficient for some women to increase fertility. For other women, getting pregnant may require a combination of treatments.
- Fertility medications ovulate.
If a woman cannot have a child because she suffers from an ovulation issue, she will most likely seek therapy with fertility medicines. Drugs in this class either control or stimulate ovulation. Your doctor is the best person to advise you on fertility drugs and the pros and cons of each.
- Insemination of the female reproductive organs (IUI).
IUI involves inserting healthy sperm into the uterus when an egg or eggs are released from the ovary. IUI can be timed to coincide with your menstrual cycle or with fertility drugs, depending on the underlying cause of infertility.
- Fertility-restoring surgery.
Hysteroscopic surgery can treat various uterine conditions, including endometrial polyps, a uterine septum, intrauterine scar tissue, and certain types of fibroids. When dealing with endometriosis, pelvic adhesions, and bigger fibroids, abdominal incisions of varying sizes may be necessary.
Assisted reproductive technology
Any method of improving a woman’s chances of conceiving by intervening with her eggs or her partner’s sperm is considered an ART. Artistic expression comes in a variety of forms.
The most widely used ART method is in vitro fertilization (IVF). During IVF, several eggs are stimulated, retrieved, fertilized with sperm in a petri dish, and then implanted in the uterus a few days later.
The IVF cycle may also include the use of other methods, such as:
- Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). An inseminated egg receives a single healthy sperm. If the quality or quantity of the sperm is low or if previous IVF cycles were unsuccessful, it may be necessary to utilize ICSI to fertilize the egg.
- Assisted hatching. Embryo implantation is aided by this method because the embryo’s protective layer is loosened (hatching).
- Donor eggs or sperm. To perform ART, a couple typically uses one or both of the male partner’s eggs and the female partner’s sperm. While using donor eggs, sperm, or embryos is not recommended until there are severe issues with the egg and sperm, it may be necessary in cases of infertility caused by genetic defects.
Preparation for your appointment
Your doctor may suggest a medical checkup if they are concerned about your age or health history. A gynecologist, urologist, or general practitioner can help you get pregnant or determine if you need to see an infertility clinic. Infertility testing for you and your partner may be necessary for some situations.
Preparing for your initial consultation includes the following:
- Discuss your efforts to conceive in detail. For example, record the dates you began attempting to conceive and how often you have engaged in sexual activity, paying specific attention to when ovulation typically occurs.
- Please bring your most important medical records. In addition, your and your partner’s medical history, including any diseases and therapies for infertility, should be included.
- You should write down all the supplements, vitamins, and drugs you use regularly. Be sure to specify the amounts and timing of each medication.
- Create a list of queries for your physician. If time is of the essence, the most crucial inquiries can be listed first.