What is Infertility?
Infertility is the inability to conceive after you’ve had frequent, unprotected sex for a period of 12 months. There are many causes for infertility, that’s why if you’re having difficulty conceiving you should see your doctor. Women over 35 should see their doctors after six months of attempting pregnancy as age may be playing a role in their ability to conceive. Since infertility affects both you and your partner, you should seek care together. Many factors can impact your ability to conceive, that’s why your St. John’s Physician Partners OB/GYN can help you identify the potential causes and recommend treatments to evaluate and manage these problems. There are many safe and effective therapies that can significantly improve your chances of getting pregnant and we’re here to help.
When you see your St. John’s Physician Partners OB/GYN for a fertility problem, you can rest assured that the doctor will work with you to diagnose the problem and to develop a treatment plan that will be most effective and works best for you and your partner.
The causes for infertility for women may include:
- Ovulation disorders
- Thyroid imbalance
- Fibroids, polyps or structural abnormalities in the uterine lining
- Blockage of fallopian tubes
- Congenital anomalies
The causes for infertility for men may include:
- Low sperm count, abnormal semen or low sperm mobility
- History of testicular, prostate or sexual problems
- Small testicles, testicular infections and overheating of testicles
- Ejaculation disorders
- Testosterone deficiencies
- Medications and therapies
- Chemotherapy or radiotherapy
- Family history of infertility
Both you and your partner need to be seen and evaluated by your doctor. Your doctor will perform a physical or pelvic examination, review your medical and sexual history and perform blood tests including testing for thyroid function and other hormonal tests; and they might suggest a test to determine if there is blockage in your fallopian tubes or structural abnormality in your uterus that may be impacting your fertility.
Treatments for infertility are geared towards problems identified in the testing performed by your SJPP gynecologist. Some treatments involve medications that improve ovulation; some involve surgical management of a structural abnormality identified. In more complex cases, your doctor may refer you to a specialist for treatment such as a reproductive endocrinologist. Treatments such as intrauterine insemination and in vitro fertility may be options to become pregnant. But first start with your St. John’s Physician Partners OB/GYN to begin the process: We understand what you’re going through and are here to help.