INITIAL CONSULTATION, DIAGNOSIS AND COUNSELLING
Regardless of age, if you have been trying to conceive for six months or longer with no success, we recommend that you schedule a consultation to determine if any potential problems exist. Our goal is to provide you with preliminary testing that will potentially put your mind at ease or alert you to issues early enough to allow for correction. Meeting with one of our qualified specialists does not obligate you in any way.
What to Expect
When you make an appointment, you will meet with one of our specialists and discuss your current situation. Our specialist will then complete an examination, hormonal evaluation, ultrasound scan and tests to rule out infection.
For conception to occur, the goal is to have an egg ovulate from the ovary, travel to the uterus through a fallopian tube and be fertilized by sperm along the way. Our initial testing, which will be determined at the consultation, may include:
- Baseline evaluation: complete blood count, sugar levels, blood grouping, screening of STDs Ultrasound scan.
- Ultrasound scan.
- Semen Analysis: This test is performed on the man's ejaculate to check both sperm count and motility.
- Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH), Luteinising hormone (LH): This test is performed on women to determine how high FSH levels are in the body. Higher levels (over 12) signal that the ovaries are having trouble properly functioning. Higher levels of LH is found in Polycystic ovarian disease.
- Hysterogram (also called a hysterosalpingogram): This x-ray test is performed on the woman to determine if her fallopian tubes are open and ensure that her uterus is normally shaped.
In addition we perform tests to evaluate the thyroid and pituitary glands, along with other hormone systems as your history dictates.
Some may require hysteroscopic –laparoscopic evaluation and operative treatment at the same time.
What to Bring
We use complete medical histories and documentation from any previous treatments to help determine whether our services will be of benefit to a woman or couple. Please bring any medical records you have that may help our specialists better understand your unique situation. If you have had a hysterogram, please bring the x-ray film or disc, not just the report.
From the initial diagnosis through all stages of treatment, CTTBC Fertility Center is dedicated to providing you with high quality, appropriate care based on your clinical needs. The CTTBC professionals decides treat you appropriatly after the completion of necessary tests.In some cases, determining the cause of infertility is the hardest part of treatment.
The First Step in Diagnosing Infertility
If repeated attempts to conceive are not successful, we recommend coming in for some basic testing in the hands of a specialist. A physician who practices a broad range of obstetrics/gynecology may not have the expertise or time to devote to determining your unique situation - and time is of the essence.
Here to Help
We are here to helpanddetermine the best course of action for you - there is never any pressure to commit or obligation to begin any expensive or complicated treatment. Our services are available to:
- Couples who have been trying to conceive for six months or longer with no success
- Women who want to preserve their eggs for future use due to medical or personal reasons
Treating the Patient, Not Just the Infertility
At the initial consultation, you will meet with one of our specialists to discuss your specific circumstances. Some of our more common treatments include:
- Reassurance with minimal medical support and educating regarding the fertile period during which the couple should have intercourse.
- Fertility Pills: A simple lack of ovulation can be treated with a fertility pill, such as Clomiphene, which stimulates ovulation. Couples may then use either natural conception or insemination, where we process the man's sperm and place it into the uterus around the time of ovulation. Success rates are very high.
- Fertility Hormonal Injections: We teach women how to give themselves injections everyday for 8 to 10 days and then we perform an insemination. The effectiveness of this treatment is age dependent, but success rates are depends on individual case history.
- IUI stands for intrauterine insemination. It is sometimes called artificial insemination as well. Essentially, IUI is a technique to directly place sperm into the uterus which is done either in a natural cycle or more commonly clubbed with ovulation induction with clomiphene and /or hormonal injections
- In Vitro Fertilization: This is the most aggressive treatment, but also the most effective. It can be done using a woman's own eggs or with donor eggs. After taking fertility hormonal injections, sometimes at a higher dose, we retrieve the woman's eggs and fertilize them with the man's sperm. The eggs are watched closely over the course of a few days and embryos are then placed in the woman's uterus. The effectiveness of this treatment is age dependent, but success rates are high.
Pregnancy rates for any type of treatment are program specific. It is very important to note that certain differences affect the rates from clinic to clinic. While some clinics may refuse a difficult case, we are willing - and more importantly able - to help, even in cases where other clinics have failed.
A Complete Cycle of Care
To help couples understand each treatment phase, we provide materials, education by physicians and staff, an orientation session if IVF is required, and access to our patient library.
The difficulties associated with trying to conceive and a diagnosis of infertility can often be a major life crisis. Many conflicting feelings and strong emotions arise and often their strength and intensity are greater than those we are used to dealing with. These feelings can often be helped with the emotional support of a trained counsellor in assited conception, who will give you the time and space needed to deal with the situation.
Some form of medical intervention, assisted conception service or treatment may become necessary to improve your chances of becoming pregnant. In these circumstances, it is particularly important that you have the opportunity to ask all the questions that you may have about assisted conception services, to access information that you need and to feel prepared and ready for whatever lies ahead. Discussing the emotional implications for yourselves, your existing children and family relationships will ensure that an informed decision is made which feels right for you. Patients considering certain assisted conception services treatments, namely those where donor eggs or sperm are used are usually given a counselling appointment at some stage. Counselling in these instances is to discuss the implications of the proposed treatment.
It is recognised that some of the treatments and assisted conception services and the time spent waiting for results or further tests is very stressful. Stress can become very debilitating both to ourselves and our relationships. In addition, there are likely to be times when important decisions have to be made, and often these are easier and clearer to make when the situation is talked through with an objective outsider who can offer the necessary time, confidentiality and experience.Support and therapeutic counselling is offered at any stage of treatment, particularly if it is unsuccessful. Although certain situations have been mentioned where counselling is recommended or might help, they are not the only indications for having an appointment. Anyone at any stage, before, during or after treatment will be seen if they wish, and in most situations the agenda is entirely up to you.