Nothing is more exciting or meaningful than taking steps to bring a child into the world. If you are having trouble conceiving, we understand your anxiety and frustration. Fortunately, an infertility specialist can help. There are many treatments available, ranging from antibiotics to high-tech solutions like in vitro fertilization. At Fort Worth Center for Pelvic Medicine in Fort Worth, Texas, we provide services that can help you increase your chances of welcoming a new baby into your life.
What Is an Infertility Specialist?
An infertility specialist is a doctor who specializes in diagnosing and treating the causes behind a person’s inability to have children. To become an infertility specialist, one must complete 4 years of medical school and 4 years of residency training in the areas of obstetrics/gynecology (OB/GYN) or urology (andrology).
When Should You See an Infertility Specialist?
For most people, the time to see a fertility doctor depends on your age and how long you have been trying to conceive. Women under age 30 should try to conceive on their own for up to 18 months before seeing a specialist. Women between age 30 and 35 can wait 12 months. Women over age 35 should seek help after 6 months.
Fertility doctors can be of special benefit to women with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), as this can lead to reproductive complications. Also, women who have had cancer can improve their chances of conceiving by seeking medical advice. Women who have had miscarriages in the past can benefit by seeing a fertility doctor before attempting to become pregnant again.
5 Ways an Infertility Specialist Can Help You
#1 They Can Determine the Cause of Infertility
Your fertility doctor can perform a series of tests to help determine the cause of your infertility. For men, these tests usually include:
- A sperm count
- Bloodwork to determine hormone levels, with a special focus on testosterone
- A urinalysis to check for infection
- A physical exam
For women, these tests usually include:
- A physical exam
- A transvaginal ultrasound
- Bloodwork to evaluate your hormone levels
- X-Ray work to determine if your fallopian tubes are healthy
- An X-Ray examination of your uterus
As part of your examination, the fertility doctor will talk with you about your medical history. He or she will put special focus on previous pregnancies and past attempts to conceive.
For most women who have trouble conceiving, the cause of the problem is related to ovulation or a blockage in the fallopian tubes. For men, infertility is usually related to the sperm. In 5%-15% of couples who cannot conceive, all tests come back normal. Whatever the cause of your infertility is determined to be, the next step is to get treatment.
#2 They Can Provide Treatment
After receiving the results of your tests, your fertility doctor can recommend a treatment plan. Common treatments for men include:
- Surgery to correct a blockage in the tubes through which sperm must pass
- Antibiotics, if the cause of infertility is an infection
- Medications and counseling to treat erectile disfunction
- Hormonal therapies
Common treatments for women include:
- Hormone therapies to promote healthy ovulation
- Surgery to open blocked fallopian tubes
#3 They Can Recommend Treatment for Your Partner
If you are tested for infertility and all test come back normal, your fertility doctor can treat your partner. If you and/or your partner cannot be treated, your fertility doctor can recommend other options such as third-party parenting.
#4 They Can Determine the Cause of Miscarriages
If you have had miscarriages in the past, your fertility doctor will look into your medical history to try to determine the cause. He or she can take steps with you to help prevent miscarriages in the future.
#5 They Can Refer You to a Reproductive Endocrinologist
If your situation requires a higher level of care, your fertility doctor can refer you to a board-certified reproductive endocrinologist for ART (Advanced Reproductive Technologies). ART includes a wide range of technologically advanced methods of treating infertility.
During IUI (intrauterine insemination), sperm is collected and inserted into a woman’s uterus during ovulation.
IVF (in vitro fertilization) is a method that involves combining sperm and an egg in a lab. After being grown in the lab for 3 to 5 days, the resulting embryo is placed inside a woman’s uterus.
IVF (in vitro fertilization) and ZIFT (zygote intrafallopian transfer) involve collecting sperm and eggs and transferring them to a woman’s fallopian tubes. This can happen either without combining them (in the case of IVF) or after bringing them together in a lab (in the case of ZIFT).
Have You Considered MonaLisa Touch?
MonaLisa Touch is a non-invasive means of laser vaginal rejuvenation. If you are having trouble conceiving because vaginal atrophy is creating a barrier between you and your partner, MonaLisa Touch can help.
The treatment only takes a few minutes, and it has no pain or side effects. MonaLisa Touch works by stimulating the production of collagen in the vaginal mucosa. After the treatment, a healthy trophic balance in the mucus membrane will be restored. This can benefit your relationship with your partner and your attempts to conceive.
Sometimes Having a Baby Just Needs a Little Help
If you are having trouble conceiving, there are many treatment options available to you. An infertility specialist can provide the care you need to determine the cause of your infertility. He or she can then recommend treatment. If your tests come back normal, the same care can be provided to your partner.
Contact Fort Worth Center for Pelvic Medicine in Fort Worth, Texas for more information on our infertility services. We will be happy to speak with you about your efforts to conceive and help make your dream of having a child come true.