Treatments for Infertility

When do you stop trying to conceive and seek infertility treatments? What is infertility, and why do some people find it so easy to conceive, while for others it can take years? Many couples trying to get pregnant are faced with this question. For some, their fears are groundless and after a few months, they enter into the much-wanted pregnancy. But for others, they suddenly discover that they are unable to conceive on their own and they need a little extra help.

If you are in a committed relationship and you want a baby, but despite all your efforts nothing is happening, read on and hopefully we will have some answers to your questions.

When to Consult an Infertility Specialist

If you are a couple in your twenties, and you have been having unprotected sex for the past year, you should seek medical help. On the other hand, if you are in your mid-to-late thirties, you should consult an infertility specialist after six months.

In among 40 percent of cases of infertility, the problem is on the woman?s side, and in another 40 percent, it is caused by the man. Ten percent of cases are caused by both partners, while the remaining ten percent is due to unknown reasons. Let?s look at the nature of male and female infertility and treatment for both of them.

Female Infertility

The most common cause of infertility among women is hormonal disorders. The process of ovulation is extremely delicate, involving various hormones. If this balance is disturbed, it impedes conception.

Another cause of female infertility is blockages or damage to the fallopian tubes, where the eggs are fertilised and conception occurs. A woman may also have various problems with her uterus, such as endometriosis, when the lining of the womb forms in the wrong places and causes blockages, or with her ovaries. One common cause of infertility is PCOS, Poly-Cystic Ovarian Syndrome, when the ovaries are full of small cysts that can disrupt the menstrual cycle and ovulation.

Another problem is simply ageing. The quality of a woman?s eggs and her levels of fertility go down as she gets older. For this, there is no exact cure, but there are various aids to assist her to conceive.

For all of these problems, there is a diverse range of treatments, including:

  • Drug treatment to correct hormonal imbalances and increase egg growth and ovulation.
  • IVF treatment (in-vitro fertilisation), when an egg is removed from the ovary and put in a petri-dish with the partner?s sperm. The two are grown in the laboratory for a few days, before being restored to the woman, who will then go through a normal pregnancy and birth. This is used when the woman has blocked fallopian tubes, endometriosis, or uterine problems.
  • Variations on IVF, including GIFT and ZIFT, which involve various methods of fertilisation inside or outside the body, depending on the type of problem.

Male Infertility

Male problems can be caused by a low sperm count, or abnormalities in the sperm?s shape or ability to swim. Reasons for this can be infection or hormonal imbalances.

Ejaculation difficulties can affect male fertility, as does spermatic cord occlusion. This is when there are blockages in the spermatic cord, which brings the sperm from the testes into the penis.

Male treatments include:

  • Artificial insemination. If the man has a low sperm count, the sperm is inserted directly into the woman so that it can reach the fallopian tubes directly.
  • IVF (see above for explanation) and its variations, if the sperm is abnormal or for certain other causes of male infertility.
  • Sperm extraction. If the man has a low sperm count or problems with the spermatic cord, the sperm is directly removed from the testis or epididymis and then injected into an egg.

Apart from the above, there are also natural infertility remedies and infertility herbs.

If you think you should seek help, make sure to consult only with reputable infertility specialists. Do plenty of detailed research, also taking into account the cost of treatment and whether you have the resources to cover it.

The most important thing, however, is not to panic. There can be many causes for a delay in conception, and not every type of infertility is irreversible. Depending on the cause of the problem, help may be at hand. So you should not give up or start to feel you will never have a baby. If anything, seeking infertility treatments to help you conceive should give you a feeling of hope.

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