Should I Use Fertility Drugs
Make certain that you understand the possible advantages and disadvantages.
It can be helpful to discuss these questions with your doctor:
Why are you suggesting fertility drugs in my case? Sometimes they are prescribed to women who do not ovulate regularly. However, they are frequently prescribed to women who do ovulate normally in the hope that the drugs will increase the chance of conception.
How will the drug affect my chance of getting pregnant? While helping with ovulation, some fertility drugs have side effects that can actually make it more difficult to conceive and establish a pregnancy.
How will I take the medications? Some are taken orally. Others must be given by injection .
How am I likely to feel while using the medications? Some women find that these powerful hormones alter their moods, ability to concentrate and physical well-being. These influences, coupled with the time demands of monitoring your body’s response to the drugs, can have a major impact on your daily routine and relationships. Although every woman’s response is unique, it can be helpful to speak with others who have used the medications.
What are the risks? Fertility drugs sometimes result in serious medical complications. In the short term, the most serious is ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome, in which the ovaries become swollen and painful and there can be a dangerous buildup of fluid, at times requiring hospitalization.
Can Stress Affect Fertility
Stress probably has a minimal impact on a women’s ability to get pregnant. Studies have shown that elite athletes and women with low female hormone production activate their stress hormones, which can have an impact on their ability to release an egg. However, normal day to day stress may not have as much of an impact on your ability to conceive. Usually stressful situations are short term and don’t have an on-going effect on your fertility.
It had been suggested that using ovulation tests to time intercourse on the most fertile days could be stressful, but a study by Professor William Ledger and Clearblue found that using these tests is no more stressful than trying to conceive without them. In fact, in this study 77% more women got pregnant in the group that were using the tests.
Time Frames To Reference When Trying To Conceive
With consideration to age, another factor to examine is the overall time frame that you and your partner have been trying to conceive within.
A good rule of thumb established by the American Society for Reproductive Medicine is that couples under the age of 35 who have failed to conceive after 12 months of regular, unprotected sex during peak ovulation cycles should seek assistance from a fertility specialist. For couples over the age of 35, that time frame is decreased by half.
The reason why these windows are so important to operate within is because failure past these markers will most likely represent an underlying issue that must be remedied before pregnancy can be achieved. Couples who think they are perfectly healthy may be surprised to know that they have a hormone imbalance disrupting the schedule of their reproductive system, or perhaps an infection is creating a blockage preventing normal activities from being carried out.
Rather than thinking of these time frames as cutoff points to surmount, you should embrace the opportunities that failure after these periods creates, which is a chance to improve your overall health and ensure a successful pregnancy with the help of a fertility specialist.
Are There Special Concerns For Pregnancies Achieved Through Infertility Treatment
Many pregnancies achieved through infertility treatment are designated as high risk for miscarriage or pregnancy complications. This may result from a woman’s age, pre-existing medical problems that may have contributed to the infertility, or the treatments themselves. For example, in 1999, an average of 15 percent of IVF and GIFT pregnancies miscarried in women younger than 35. In women age 40, about 29 percent of IVF and GIFT pregnancies miscarried, as did 43 percent of those in women age 42. Ask your doctor how likely it is that you will miscarry or develop other serious complications.
An infertility specialist or obstetrician may be able to predict what special care you are likely to need. In general, pregnancies resulting from infertility treatment involve more medication, more prenatal tests, and are more likely to end in a cesarean delivery. Before any treatment, ask how it may affect your pregnancy and the prenatal care that will be recommended.
Pregnancies involving multiple births require special care and involve a higher risk of certain complications .
Will I Be The Legal Mother If My Baby Was Created With A Donor Egg
As the woman who gives birth, it is highly unlikely that anyone would ever challenge your status as the legal mother of the baby. However, the issue has been raised in a few custody disputes between a birth mother and her husband or partner. In these cases, the father argued that he should have greater rights because he has a genetic link to the child that the mother does not. If a question arises, it would be decided in accordance with state law. Laws in several states make it clear that the birth mother, and not the egg donor, is the legal mother.
Under New York State law, a birth mother – whether or not she is also the genetic mother – is the legal mother unless she later gives up her parental rights. However, the use of donor eggs by unmarried women is not specifically mentioned in the New York laws.
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If All The Embryos Aren’t Transferred What Happens To Them
Before you begin an IVF cycle, you and your physician should agree on what will happen to any extra eggs or embryos. In most cases, excess embryos are frozen for possible use in a future cycle. However, other options are open to couples who do not wish to freeze embryos. Depending on the program, excess embryos can be discarded, donated for research or donated to another couple. Couples who object to all of these options can limit the number of eggs that are mixed with sperm. That way no extras can be created. However, no one can know with certainty how many eggs will fertilize or what the quality of the resulting embryos will be. Therefore, this option could significantly limit your chances of delivering a child.
In New York State, programs that freeze embryos must be licensed and adhere to state regulations on safety and recordkeeping. A program should not offer IVF unless they have the ability to freeze and store embryos.
Are We Required To Take Medical And Psychological Tests Unrelated To Infertility
Yes. As part of screening, you may be asked to undergo medical or psychological testing. For example, you may be required to be screened for infections that can be transmitted during pregnancy or through tissue transplants, such as hepatitis or human immunodeficiency virus infection. Before a woman over a certain age is accepted, she may be required to undergo extra medical tests to determine whether her heart can withstand the physical demands of pregnancy. Doctors may require psychological testing in order to gauge a patient’s stability and ability to make the decisions needed to safely undergo complex treatment.
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Diagnosing Health Issues And Making Improvements
The final thing that couples must assess is their overall physical condition and how they can make improvements to their general health.
Issues that prevent pregnancy from occurring can be overwhelming to say the least. Both men and women must pay close attention to their reproductive health, personal health, lifestyle factors, and environmental factors when trying to conceive because even the slightest problem can result in many failed attempts.
Some of the most common fertility problems that women face include PCOS, PID, uterine fibroids, and endometriosis, whereas men may struggle with having a low sperm count, poor sperm health, low testosterone, or issues with sexual performance. That being said, many of these problems for both genders can go unnoticed if they aren’t being directly examined, and that’s why meeting with a fertility specialist can provide some valuable insight.
A fertility specialist can recommend several ways for both men and women to amend their health issues or prescribe certain medications and procedures to help. Dealing with fertility issues can certainly be a challenge if you’re unsure of what to look for, but being aware of your overall health and finding the right support will make a huge difference.
Causes Of Female Infertility
Female infertility is a factor for about one-third of couples who are trying to conceive.
The most common cause is a problem with ovulation. If you dont ovulate, you wont release an egg to be fertilized.
Ovulation problems can be caused by:
- surgery for an ectopic pregnancy
A problem with the uterus can also make it harder to get pregnant. This may be due to an abnormal structure, or due to growths like fibroids.
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I Had A Termination In The Past Could It Affect My Ability To Get Pregnant Now
Professor Michael Thomas
Usually a pregnancy termination will not affect your ability to get pregnant in the future. On rare occasions, you may develop adhesions in the uterus that can cause issues with future fertility. If you are having normal monthly cycles, the chances of these adhesions affecting your fertility are low. Seeing your fertility specialist or gynecologist will be helpful in making sure your uterus has not been affected if you have been attempting pregnancy for one year, are under the age of 35 and have cycles between 23-35 days long. f you are over 35, consider a consultation after six months, and immediately if over 40.
What Additional Treatments Or Procedures May Be Recommended
Depending on your condition or your response to previous treatments, variations on IVF may be suggested. Each adds cost and certain risks. Success depends greatly on the expertise of the lab personnel who will be manipulating the eggs, sperm and embryos. Be sure you know your program’s level of experience, as well as the pros and cons of using any of these procedures in your case:
Intracytoplasmic sperm injection is used to increase the chance of fertilization. Instead of mixing sperm and eggs and waiting for fertilization to occur, a single sperm is injected directly into each egg.
Assisted hatching is used to increase the chance that an embryo will implant in the uterus. A small opening is created to make it easier for the developing embryo to emerge from the protective shell that surrounds it.
Blastocyst transfer is used to maximize the chance of pregnancy while minimizing the risk of a multiple pregnancy. Instead of transferring embryos after two or three days in the lab, they are grown to the many-celled blastocyst stage and transferred on day five. By this point, surviving embryos have a higher chance of establishing a pregnancy, so fewer need to be transferred.
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Causes Of Male Infertility
Male infertility is a factor for about 8 percent of couples who are trying to conceive.
Causes of male infertility include:
- enlarged veins on the testicles, called varicocele
- abnormally shaped sperm
- injury to the testes that reduces sperm production
- heavy drinking, smoking, or drug use
- chemotherapy or radiation to treat cancer
- problems with the glands that produce the hormones needed to make sperm
- more rarely, genetic disorders such as Klinefelter syndrome
How Long Can I Wait To Use The Embryos
Some programs will keep frozen embryos indefinitely if you continue to pay the storage fees. Others limit the time embryos may be stored. At that point you may need to transfer the embryos to another facility or select a different option for their use or disposal.
According to the available evidence, how long embryos are stored does not seem to affect their quality.
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Guide To Getting Pregnant In Your Late 30s And Early 40s
Are you wanting to grow your family, but worried about getting pregnant due to your age? In this article, OBGYN Dr. Gleaton tells you what you need to know about pregnancy, fertility, and age.
By OBGYN and fertility expert Dr. Kenosha Gleaton
With increased knowledge and advancements in medicine and fertility, more and more women are choosing to have children later in life. The National Center for Health Statistics stated the average age of first birth in the US rose from 24.9 years in 2000 to 26.3 years in 2014. This also varies by county for example, from 2007-2017, the mean age of mothers at first birth rose by 1.3 years in rural areas, 1.5 in small to medium-metro areas, and 1.8 in larger metropolitan areas.
How Soon Will We Have An Answer
Testing will likely take more than a month. Some tests must be scheduled at a specific point in the menstrual cycle. Others may require charting or repeated testing over a few months.
If you become concerned that your work-up is not proceeding efficiently, particularly if you are a woman over age 35, talk to your doctor about your concerns. Many infertility patients report that they regret having wasted valuable time prior to starting treatment.
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Fertility Clinics: What Should I Expect
If you’re preparing to visit a fertility clinic, you probably have hundreds of questions – they likely didn’t cover this topic in health class in high school! And it may not be a topic that comes up often among your friends or at cocktail parties. Even in our tell-all society, it can still be challenging to discuss fertility issues and treatment openly.
Find a clinic
Maybe you’re still in the investigation and fact-finding stage – you think you want to visit a clinic but aren’t sure where to start, or how to even find a clinic. You can start by asking your family doctor or OB/GYN for help.
What clinics can do
Often, the reason you are not getting pregnant is treatable. Problems conceiving may be due to a single cause or a combination of factors that may prevent a pregnancy from occurring or continuing. A fertility specialist may be able to determine what the cause is.
At the fertility clinic, you will be presented with different treatment options suitable for your condition. There are many safe and effective therapies that can help you become pregnant. When women of past generations were trying to get pregnant, fertility conversations, if they happened at all, were confined to the family doctor. There was no proper fertility care available to those in need. Now there are modern fertility clinics in most major cities and hospitals in Canada and around the world.
What to expect from a clinic
Testing and diagnosis
How Successful Are Fertility Treatments
Fertility treatments are successful, but outcomes depend on many factors. The two most important factors are a womans age and the cause of infertility.
Naturally, more interventional therapies have higher success rates. Ovulation stimulation with intrauterine insemination treatments can have success rates of 5 to 10 percent per cycle in unexplained infertility. This can go up to 18 percent in individuals with ovulation disorders or when donor sperm is being used and there arent any underlying female issues. Typically, IVF can have live birth rates of 45 to 60 percent. This can increase to live birth rates of up to 70 percent if high quality embryos are transferred.
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When You Are Not Getting Pregnant: Helping Nature Along
Generally speaking, couples trying to get pregnant should have sex at least 2-3 times each week. You can improve your chances by monitoring your ovulation, then being sure to have sex during your most fertile period. Standing on your head after intercourse wont increase the likelihood of successful conception, but do stay horizontal and relax for a few minutes afterwards. If youre out of shape, start eating more healthily and working out in whatever way is best for you, as this will better prepare you for the physical demands of pregnancy and can even increase your chances of getting pregnant. Both partners should cut out smoking and all but occasional social drinking, as these habits can have a negative effect on fertility for both men and women.
How Long Does It Take The Average Couple To Get Pregnant
Its not uncommon for couples who start trying for conception to underestimate how long it will take to get pregnant. While some couples do get pregnant quickly, it takes other couples much longer. This is because for ovulation and conception to occur, the conditions have to be just right. Heres what you need to know about how long it usually takes to get pregnant, how long is too long, and when you should start having the infertility discussion.
Clearblue has done significant research on how long it takes for the average couple to get pregnant. Their studies indicate that about one-third of healthy couples will conceive during the first month of trying to get pregnant. However, it can take up to a year or 12 menstrual cycles for healthy couples under the age of 35 to conceive. When polled, 30-44% of couples who did conceive said it took longer than they thought it would. One in seven couples has difficulty getting pregnant.
The Most Common Reason Couples Dont Get Pregnant QuicklyClearblue suggests that half of the couples may actually be mistiming intercourse because they have little awareness of when their most fertile days are. Conception can only occur a few days before and the day of ovulation and when intercourse does not happen exactly within this timeframe, its unlikely that conception will be successful.
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