The Male Side of Infertility
When we work with families, we provide tailored treatment plans and programs. However, there are several common questions that come up relevant to fertility treatment. Below are the Fertility FAQ’s we hear most in our office.
Top 4 Common Fertility FAQ’s
A woman under the age of 30 can attempt pregnancy for up to 12 months by having intercourse at least twice weekly and/or timed intercourse based on a positive ovulation prediction kit. If she doesn’t become pregnant by the twelfth month, both she and her partner should seek an evaluation.
Women 30 and older should consider an evaluation after attempting for 6 months because egg numbers and quality can begin a rapid decline starting as early as 33 years old in some women. By having an evaluation sooner, a woman who needs fertility treatment may still be able to achieve pregnancy before her ovarian egg reserves decline completely.
2. What is a fertility evaluation?
An evaluation starts with a complete medical history and examination. During that visit, some lab tests assessing hormone levels, particularly an AMH (anti-mullerian hormone) level to check egg reserve may be ordered, as well as testing for any infectious diseases that can cause infertility. An ultrasound examination to evaluate the uterus and ovaries may be scheduled as well as an HSG (hysterosalpingogram). The HSG is an X-ray test that can show the shape of the uterine cavity and if fallopian tubes are open.
In addition, male partners should have a semen analysis and examination as 40% of couples attempting pregnancy have BOTH female and male causes.
3. What are some ways to improve or increase my chance of conception?
Healthy low sugar, low processed food diets as well as vitamins can ensure that you have adequate nutrients. Regular moderate exercise 3-4 days per week is also beneficial for fitness and stress management. When combined with a good diet, it promotes healthy body weight. However, women should limit high-intensity aerobic exercise to 40 minutes no more than 3 days per week to avoid elevating their core body temperature too long. This can deplete ovarian reserves.
Home ovulation prediction kits sold in pharmacies and online such as Clear Blue Easy Digital Ovulation Test or First Response Digital Ovulation test can help couples better time their intercourse during the fertile window.
If testing is too stressful, simply have intercourse approximately every 3-4 days (twice weekly). This will ensure that living sperm is constantly in the Fallopian tubes awaiting ovulation whenever it occurs.
4. What does fertility treatments cost?
The cost of fertility evaluation and treatment can vary greatly depending on what’s needed. Lab and X-ray expenses will be variable because some tests may not be necessary based on medical history. Fertility treatment costs will also be based on the level of care that is needed. At Holistic Gynecology, it can be less than $750 per cycle for some patients. Others may require treatment plans that can range between $1000-3000 per cycle. Some tests and treatment may be covered by your insurance so check your policy.
There you have it, the top common Fertility FAQ’s we hear from our patients. If you have additional questions about our fertility treatments, don’t hesitate to call our office at (678) 205-0405.