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When to See a Doctor About Infertility

When you’re ready for a baby there’s a certain amount of trepidation and concern regarding your fertility. After a few months of trying only to have your hopes dashed yet again when your period shows up you might begin to suspect your fertility isn’t a sure thing. You may even decide to schedule an appointment with your doctor to discuss the possibility of infertility. But you really need to give the process a little more time.

If you and your partner have tried to conceive for 12 consecutive months and are still unsuccessful then you can consult your OB/GYN. And for women over the age of 35 trying for six months without conceiving is also a cause to check in with your doctor. However, that’s not always a clear indication of infertility and these timelines aren’t always set in stone.


Your Unique Situation

A diagnosis of infertility is never a one-size-fits-all and neither is your treatment. You or your partner may have a pre-existing condition that affects your fertility. Perhaps you suffer from irregular menstrual cycles, or you take certain medications for a chronic illness. Your age may play a role in your inability to conceive as well.

Here we take a look at some of the common causes of infertility, their symptoms and when you should see a doctor about infertility.


Reasons to Suspect Infertility

The inability to conceive, in and of itself, doesn’t automatically doom your fertility. There are certain other signs and symptoms which indicate you should consult your doctor regarding your inability to conceive. Here are some of the most common reasons to schedule a consultation with your doctor:


  • You are a woman over the age of 35. Women are born with all of the eggs they will ever have and as she ages, so do a woman’s eggs. As women get closer to menopause their ovarian reserve, that is the number of viable eggs, decreases significantly.


  • Age-related fertility issues don’t just affect women. Men over the age of 40 may find their term count, and motility (movement) decline as well.


  • Irregular menstrual cycles could be an indication you aren’t ovulating regularly. A normal menstrual cycle is anywhere from 23 days to 35 days. If your periods are coming more frequently or you experience missed periods and you aren’t pregnant, I could indicate you aren’t ovulating.


  • Painful periods or heavy menstrual flow may be a symptom of endometriosis. If your periods are painful to the point of debilitating or you soak through a tampon or pad in about an hour consult your doctor.


  • Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) causes inflammation and scarring to your reproductive organs. PID is usually the result of an infection in your pelvic region such as an STI left untreated.


  • Certain cancer treatments can cause damage to your reproductive system. Chemotherapy and radiation may impact your fertility as will some other medications. If you or your partner must undergo treatment for cancer discuss your options for fertility preservation prior to treatment.


  • Hormonal disorders such as polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) make it difficult to conceive. Some symptoms of PCOS include irregular and light periods (spotting), excessive body hair in places you normally don’t have any like your chest, unexplained weight gain, especially in your midsection and acne.


  • Auto-Immune disorders such as thyroid disease, lupus, diabetes, Crohn’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and others may interfere with fertility. Some medication prescribed for these conditions also impacts fertility. Let your immunologist know you plan to become pregnant.


  • Surgeries in your pelvic region or involving your reproductive organs can cause a build-up of scar tissue and inflammation.


  • Multiple miscarriages or an ectopic pregnancy may indicate an underlying fertility issue.



Diagnosis to Treatment

If you experienced any of the above symptoms and conditions, or if you’ve been trying to conceive the recommended amount of time without success, please see your doctor. Your regular OB/GYN will likely suggest you consult with a fertility specialist who will help uncover any underlying condition you may not even know about. Both you and your partner should anticipate testing in order to find out the reasons behind your diagnosis.

In some cases, the diagnosis points to female factor and some male factor infertility. You may experience a diagnosis of combined male and female factors, or your doctor may find no identifiable reason for your inability to conceive. Doctors call this unexplained infertility.

Your treatment depends on your diagnosis and may involve medication, lifestyle change or surgical procedures to remove scar tissue or endometriosis. You may decide to pursue IVF or another type of fertility treatment. Your doctor will discuss your diagnosis and any treatment options with you and your partner.


We’re Here to Help You

Above all else you should never lose heart. Don’t scrap your desire to grow your family simply because you’ve hit a roadblock. At LA IVF, our compassionate team of fertility experts’ partner with you and together we seek solutions based on your unique diagnosis.

If you suspect infertility is preventing you from becoming pregnant the “old-fashioned way” then reach out to LA IVF today and lets find a way for you to realize your dream.

TEL: 310-286-2800 | FAX: 310-691-1116