If you are concerned about your fertility, the first thing to understand is that you are not alone. Up to one in six couples have difficulty conceiving in the first 12 months of trying.
There are two types of infertility. The first is known as primary infertility and this is where a couple has never achieved a pregnancy. Secondary infertility is where a couple is unable to conceive after they have already had a pregnancy or child.
Scientific advances over the past three decades have helped many, many people overcome problems with fertility. Treatments ranging from medications to assisted reproductive technologies, including the most well known, invitro fertilisation (IVF) are now achieving exceptional success.
Here at ReproMed every one of our patients is an individual, and that is at the centre of everything we do. We won’t push you towards a treatment for which you are not ready: we’ll listen to you. We’ll do our best to cause as little disruption to your life as possible when going through treatment. Above all, we will never compromise your chances of a successful outcome by speeding up or slowing down the process.
Infertility is defined as not being able to get pregnant despite having regular, unprotected sexual intercourse for at least a year.
Most couples (approximately 85%) will achieve pregnancy within one year of trying, however some will not. We generally recommend seeking the help of a Fertility Specialist if conception has not occurred after a year of trying regularly.
Infertility causes can affect one or both partners. In general:
- In about one-third of cases, there is an issue with the male.
- In about one-third of cases, there is an issue with the female.
- In the remaining cases, there are issues with both the male and female, or no cause can be identified (unexplained infertility).
When to seek help?
It can be difficult to know when to visit a specialist to seek infertility treatment, as this can often depend on the individual but one of the most important factors in determining when is right to get support, is age.
The ages and lengths of time trying to conceive before visiting a specialist are shown below:
- Women under 35 - 1 year without success
- Women 35 - 39 - six months without success
- Over 40 - as soon as possible
Other Signs & Symptoms
Apart from the fact you may have been trying to become pregnant unsuccessfully, there may be no obvious signs or symptoms of what is causing the problem. However, the following are good reasons to visit a specialist as soon as possible:
- Irregular or absent menstrual periods
- History of pelvic infection
- Two or more miscarriages
- Sterilisation reversal
- Difficulties with sexual intercourse
- Chronic pelvic pain
- History of sexually transmitted disease
- Excessive acne or facial hair
The ReproMed Blog is a good source of useful articles on many fertility issues and a great place to get to know the staff you'll meet on your own fertility journey.
Our simple guide to getting started on your journey outlines the first steps and initial testing required before moving to your treatment plan.