Frequently Asked Questions for Uth9

How long should we try before we see a doctor?

Experts often advise you not to be concerned unless you have been trying to conceive for at least one year, unless you do not menstruate regularly. However, if you are over 30 years old, have a history of pelvic inflammatory disease, painful periods, miscarriage, irregular cycles, or if your partner has a known low sperm count, it is often recommended by doctors that you may want to seek help sooner.

What is a Fertility Specialist?

A fertility specialist, or Reproductive Endocrinologist, is a medical doctor who has been specially trained in the complex issues that can contribute to infertility. In addition to being trained as an Ob/Gyn, a Reproductive Endocrinologist must complete highly specialized training for all aspects of infertility.

At what time of the month is a woman most fertile?

The most fertile time of the month is just before or at ovulation. Ovulation usually occurs two weeks before a period starts, so it is necessary to count backwards from the anticipated start of the next period in order to find the most fertile time.

Are there any other ways to detect ovulation?

Yes. You can buy an ovulation predictor urine test at your drug store. Also, your body may signal when you are about to ovulate; many women feel twinges in their lower abdomen (your ovaries are on the right and left sides of your lower abdomen

How often should we have intercourse?

It is a good idea to have intercourse every other day around the time you ovulate. (Day 10, 12, 14, and 16.) Remember, every woman is different, and may not ovulate exactly on “Day 14.” And, just because you ovulated on “Day 14″ this month, doesn’t mean you will next month. It is preferable to have intercourse every other day rather than every day so that sufficient sperm will be available. To increase your chances of the egg becoming fertilized, it is generally recommended that you do not douche or use lubricants immediately before having intercourse.

Are hot tubs really bad for a man?

Yes. High temperatures can kill sperm. That is why the scrotum is located outside the body to act as a kind of “refrigerator” to keep the sperm cool. So, it is a good idea to avoid hot tubs, saunas, and steam rooms. Wear loose pants and underwear.

What tests MIGHT our fertility specialist perform?

Your doctor will likely do the following:

Blood tests to check all hormone levels in the woman; thyroid, prolactin, and androgen levels Complete semen analysis on the male partner Hysterosalpingogram (HSG), an xray

Endometrial biopsy, to check the quality of the uterine lining (if appropriate) Laparoscopy,

How is a semen analysis done?

The lab will provide instructions to abstain from sex for a certain period of time before the test, and it will give you a small jar to use for the specimen. Generally, after masturbating and ejaculating into the jar, you must take the whole specimen immediately to the lab. You may be asked to produce a specimen at the lab, where they will provide a private room.


What if I don’t respond to the drugs for ovarian stimulation?

A response to ovarian stimulation depends on a number of different factors, the most important include available eggs, appropriate hormone levels, proper administration of any medications and lifestyle/environmental factors.

For non-responsive patients, an alternate stimulation protocol may be tried or donated eggs may be used (from a woman known or unknown to the patient). Lifestyle factors can also affect a woman’s response to stimulation. Optimizing weight, diet and stress and cessation of use of tobacco, alcohol and recreational substances can also improve a response to ovarian stimulation. Speak to your physician regarding improving your particular response to ovarian stimulation

What if my eggs don’t fertilize?

Most eggs will fertilize when they are placed in a culture dish with several thousand-normal sperm.  This process is called “in vitro fertilization” or “IVF.” When there are not enough normal functioning sperm for IVF, fertilization will usually occur after a single live sperm is injected into each egg, termed “intracytoplasmic sperm injection” or “ICSI.” On rare occasions, fertilization does not occur even with ICSI, presumably because of a problem inherent to either eggs or sperm. In these cases, the use of donor sperm or donor eggs will usually result in fertilization. Your fertility specialist and IVF laboratory personnel will help you determine which approach is most likely to result in egg fertilization.