If you are under 35 and have not been able to get pregnant after having regular, unprotected sexual intercourse for at one year, you should see a fertility doctor. For women over 35, the time period for trying to get pregnant naturally is shortened to six months. Look: A woman’s fertility is dependent upon her overall health, wellness and lifestyle choices. Many women suffering from infertility use up too much valuable time trying to conceive naturally when there is a simple medical solution to their problem. Bottom Line: Don’t delay treatment.
When to See a Fertility Specialist
Infertility can be difficult to diagnose. The sooner you seek help from a fertility specialist, the less time you will waste trying to get pregnant.
- A woman’s peak fertility years are in her 20s to mid-30s
- Women in their peak fertility years have a 20 percent chance of pregnancy every month
- A woman’s fertility level begins to decline after 30 and there is a precipitous drop after she turns 35
- Women over 40 only have about a 5 percent chance of getting pregnant during any given month
Symptoms of Infertility
Are you experiencing any of these symptoms?
- Inability to get pregnant
- Menstrual cycle lasting too long – over 35 days
- Too short of a menstrual cycle – under 21 days
- Irregular menstrual cycle
- Absent menstrual cycle
Common Causes of Female-Factor Infertility
You may be suffering from one of these medical conditions:
- Failure to ovulate
- Irregular ovulation
- Uterine fibroids
- Ovarian cysts
- Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
- Blocked Fallopian tubes
- Abnormally shaped uterus or cervix
- Hormonal imbalance
Diagnostic Testing for Female-Factor Infertility
You may benefit from one or more of these diagnostic tests:
- Blood work to evaluate hormone levels
- Ultrasound to examine reproductive organs
- Hysteroscopy to examine the uterine cavity
- Laparoscopy to examine the uterus, Fallopian tubes, and ovaries
An ovulation disorder is diagnosed when a woman ovulates irregularly – or – not at all. Problems with the regulation of reproductive hormones cause ovulation disorders.
- Pituitary gland
- Ovary non-function
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
PCOS causes a hormone imbalance and adversely affects a woman’s ovulation. PCOS is detected by:
- Insulin resistance
- Abnormal hair growth
When the production of Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) and Luteinizing Hormone (LH) are disrupted by the following events, a woman’s ovulation is affected and irregular or absent periods occur.
- Excessive emotional stress
- Excessive physical stress
- High BMI
- Low BMI
- Sudden weight loss
- Sudden weight gain
Premature Ovarian Failure (POF)
Also known as Primary Ovarian Insufficiency, this condition is caused by an autoimmune response. Premature loss of eggs from a woman’s ovary can be due to genetics or chemotherapy treatment.
- A women under 40 is no longer able to produce eggs
- Estrogen levels are lowered in women under the age of 40
Too Much Prolactin
The pituitary gland may cause excess production of prolactin – hyperprolactinemia. This reduces estrogen production and causes infertility. Medications may also cause a pituitary gland problem.
Damaged Fallopian Tubes
Known as tubal infertility, damaged or blocked Fallopian tubes prevent sperm from reaching a woman’s egg – or – block the passage of a fertilized into the uterus.
- Pelvic inflammatory disease
- Uterine infection
- Fallopian tube infection caused by STD – chlamydia, gonorrhea
- Ectopic pregnancy surgery
- Abdomen or pelvic surgery
When tissue that normally grows within a woman’s uterus grows in other areas of the reproductive system, endometriosis is diagnosed. This extra tissue growth causes scarring and blocks the Fallopian tubes.
- Adversely affects the lining of the uterus
- Disrupts the implantation of a fertilized egg
- Damages egg
- Damages sperm
- Blocks sperm from traveling toward egg
- Block a fertilized egg from traveling into the uterus
Uterine or Cervical Conditions
Uterine or cervical conditions can cause infertility.
- Interference with implantation of an embryo
- Increase of a miscarriage should an embryo implant in the uterine lining and then fail to thrive
What are the causes?
- Benign polyps (fibroids) in the uterus
- Benign tumors (myomas) in the uterus
These conditions can block Fallopian tube passage or interfere with implantation in the uterine lining.
- Abnormally shaped uterus
- Narrowing of the cervix
- Insufficient production of cervical mucus
World Renowned Fertility Specialists
Contact the Fertility Specialists at New Hope Fertility Center and discover the reason you can’t get pregnant. Then, let us design a customized fertility treatment plan to help you have a baby. To schedule your initial consultation, click the icon below – or – call 917.525.5496.