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Houston Fertility Journal

A Fertility Specialist may be the Secret Ingredient you are Missing

[fa icon="calendar"] Oct 30, 2017 12:00:00 PM / by Center of Reproductive Medicine   

Center of Reproductive Medicine

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It may be startling that you have to turn to the option of fertility treatment. Most people want to find that immediate answer to their questions, and watching their friends have it easy makes the process even more frustrating. It seems like an incredibly extraneous approach to go to a doctor for help when it comes to something that should happen naturally. Yet, everyone has a different reproductive system. It just doesn't always work the way you think it should.

Assisted reproductive technology provides a path for couples that are not experiencing an easy flow toward conception, and that is okay. A lot of couples realize ART (assisted reproductive technology) is an existing path toward fertility that they didn't realize was possible. At the end of the day, you shouldn't waste your time feeling like there is no solution.

The first realization usually is “am I neglecting the fact that I may need some assistance?” If it has been more than a year it is time to consider other options. This doesn’t make you less than anyone else, it just means that you are taking the next step.

Infertility specialists are here to hear your story and help you in any way that they can, and here is how.

When To Know If You Should Seek A Specialist

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There are a good many reasons why you would be referred to a fertility specialist, and here a few examples:

  • if you are a female at the age of 38 or over
  • if you have blocked fallopian tubes at any age
  • any other tubal problems
  • the existence of endometriosis at any age
  • the male has a sperm count under 10 million per ml or sperm motility under 40%
  • issues with ovulation - like polycystic ovarian syndrome
  • abnormal ovarian tests

The treatment doesn't not have to be expensive, depending on the specialist that you see. They are usually always willing to work with you to know what is going on, no matter what the case,

More Detail About Necessary Treatment

Some people turn to in vitro fertilization (IVF) for infertility or genetic issues. The treatment can be done for women over 40 with a lower supply of eggs, or women with:

  • Fallopian tube damage or blockage: this makes it hard for an egg to be fertilized or an embryo to travel through the uterus
  • Ovulation disorders: when ovulation is less frequent or non-existent and less eggs can be fertilized
  • Premature ovarian failure: this is when women lose regular ovarian function before they turn 40. Once the ovaries fail they cannot produce regular amounts of estrogen or release eggs regularly
  • Endometriosis: this condition will happen when the uterine tissue plants itself and then continues to grow on the outside of the uterus. This tends to affect the functions of the ovaries, uterus, and fallopian tubes
  • Fibroids in the uterus: fibroids are usually benign tumors that are common in women in their 30’s and 40’s. Fibroids can get in the way when the egg is trying to plant the fertilized egg
  • Tubal sterilization or removal: if you once had tubal ligation (which is a type of sterilization where your fallopian tubes are blocked to permanently prevent pregnancy) IVF can help with the reversal of tubal ligation
  • Unexplained infertility: Seeking out an infertility specialist for when you are completely unaware of the issue that exists when it comes to conception can open up pathways that you never knew existed
  • Genetic disorders: you or your partner may be at risk of passing on a genetic disorder to your expected child. This could make you candidates to preimplantation genetic diagnosis (which involves IVF). Once the eggs are harvested and fertilized they will be screened for genetic problems. These issues cannot always be found, but embryos that do not withstand certain problems can be removed from the uterus
  • Preservation of fertility with cancer or other issues: for those about to undergo cancer treatment (like radiation or chemotherapy), it may harm your fertility and make IVF something to consider. This is a time when a woman might consider removing her eggs from her ovaries for later use. It can be done that way, or pre-fertilized and harvested for later use.

Why Go With IVF

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You may be unaware of whether or not you require treatment, and a lot of these examples could apply to many people. When you are considering treatments it will help to think about the fact that:

Anyone can have children: getting in vitro treatment make it possible to nearly any couple or individual person to have a child. This applies to anyone, no matter their family status or sexual orientation. Whether you are a single woman, man, gay, a lesbian couple, or a couple having a hard time conceiving, you can still use IVF to conceive a child.

It takes on all infertility issues: IVF was created to help both women and men with their infertility issues. For women, it address missing/damaged/and blocked fallopian tubes. These patients were some of the first successful IVF patients. This is possible because the eggs fertilized outside of the female body and then placed back into her body were the ones most able to be fertilized.

When To Visit A Specialist

If you are truly coming to the conclusion that you are ready to meet a specialist, you may be wondering where you should start. This time can be very overwhelming, but there are some ways you can plan your approach and we are here to help you consider them:

Your doctor should be someone you can connect with

Once you start seriously looking at infertility specialists, you need to know that you have found a doctor that you can relate to. This part if your life is groundbreaking, and this person means a great deal to your future. Think about how this doctor and their team will be the ones that will help you achieve your goal. No matter what, you should have no qualms about trusting them.

Success rates are deceiving

You will undoubtedly be told to look into the success rates of the clinics that you are considering, but make sure that you can trust your recommendations. Some centers have very high success rates, but that may be because they only accept people with the most promising cases and nothing more.

Other centers may have lower success rates because they choose to accept those with the most challenging situations. Think about what this could mean to you and your situation and choose carefully. Each person and their situation is completely unique. Because of this, you should make sure to ask the questions that may pertain to you.

The best way to do this is to learn about your doctor’s experience and how much they understand your particular issue. If they seem lost, you should ask for more details and may want to look in another direction.

Make sure your doctor has experience with your particular issue and someone of your age. It may take a little time to find the doctor that’s right for you, but you should only be working with doctors that understand your particular circumstance.

Your situation may be unchangeable

A lot of things can be changed, but age can come in the way. Many doctors may try their hardest to do what they can for you, but if you are over 50, you should simply trust the honesty of the doctor. Doctors cannot change basic biology. There is also the fact that certain conditions that affect your fertility cannot be changed.

They will do their best to help you, but you should also know that the doctor will tell you when too much is against your favor. Make sure that you have the best team to support you, and that they will only better your situation.

Your finances

This is the most worrisome part for a lot people. The cost can seem very intimidating. The average cost of an IVF cycle starts at 12,000 and then 3,000 to 5,000 for medication. Depending on where you are in the country, the prices will vary. Yet, they often can depend on various options of treatment costs aligned with your specific insurance.

There are certain financial options that provide a refund if your treatment does not prove to be successful. Some couples even are fully funded on sites like gofundme.com. There are many ways to get support, it just takes some effort to find them.

You may find the right insurance plan

Your personal insurance might actually be in your favor. You may not be sure where your state stands, and you should definitely look into it. Make sure that you do research before you start any treatment to avoid any legal battles now or later on.

Multiples could happen

This may seem exciting, but it could be dangerous. IVF may result in you being pregnant with more than one child, and how many embryos are transferred will make a difference. This is up to you and your doctor, so make sure that you can trust the person that is treating you and that you understand why they make each decision. Make sure that you know exactly what you are getting into and how it pertains to your health.

What using an egg donor means

You may start to consider using other options, outside of your loved ones, to create a family. Especially after going through multiple unsuccessful IUI’s, you most likely realize that something has to change.

At this time you may consider a third party reproduction option. such as:

  • surrogacy
  • donor eggs
  • or donor sperm

These options can allow infertile couples to work through their infertility struggles. once you have undergone enough tests, your doctor may recommend taking this avenue.

Trust the medicine

Your doctor might not have all of the right answers initially, but you should know that they are doing everything that they can to help. What you can do, when it comes to knowing that you are with the right doctor, is make sure that your physician is staying up to date with the newest practices.

When you are talking with your fertility specialist, ask them about the newfound practices that they are adopting. For physicians, it is imperative that they stay up to date on the newest medications and treatments that are being introduced. Your physician should know all about them and which one best suits you.

Your Choice

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Be picky about your fertility center. Make sure that it is right for you. Not only  should you be sure that they are practicing the right techniques, you should also vibe with you doctor and feel safe in their office environment. You already know this, but, you want a family, and there is a lot at stake. Take time and care, the right doctor could change your life.

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Topics: Fertility Clinic, Fertility Specialist

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