Pregnancy begins with fertilization when a female’s egg joins with a man’s sperm. It takes days for the egg to travel down the fallopian tube and into the uterus.
If the fertilized egg is successfully implanted into the lining of the uterus, a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) is produced. This hormone keeps the uterine lining from being shed. Hence, when a woman is pregnant, she won’t have any period.
Infertility pertains to not being able to get pregnant after a year of trying. This can also apply to a woman who can get pregnant but keeps having miscarriages or stillbirths.
There are several possible causes of infertility.
- • abnormal sperm production or function
- • problems with the delivery of the sperm
- • overexposure to certain environmental factors
- • damage resulting from cancer and its treatment
- • disorders in ovulation
- • abnormalities in the cervix or uterus
- • damage in the fallopian tube
- • endometriosis
- • cancer and its treatment
How Can We Help?
If you and your partner are struggling to have a baby, you are not alone. In the United States, 10% to 15% of couples are infertile. Infertility is defined as not being able to get pregnant despite having frequent, unprotected sex for at least a year for most couples.
Our specialists at Women’s Healthcare of Norman can help you find the most suitable treatment options.
Infertility treatment would depend on what’s causing infertility, how long you’ve been infertile, your age and your spouse’s age, and your personal preferences.
Infertility may result from an issue with either you or your partner, or a combination of factors that prevent pregnancy. Fortunately, there are many safe and effective therapies that significantly improve your chances of getting pregnant. Depending on your situation, you may have a general physical exam, including a regular gynecological exam, Medications and specific fertility tests.
- Ovulation testing. A blood test measures hormone levels to determine whether you are ovulating.
- Hysterosalpingography. Hysterosalpingography (his-tur-o-sal-ping-GOG-ruh-fee) evaluates the condition of your uterus and fallopian tubes and looks for blockages or other problems. X-ray contrast is injected into your uterus, and an X-ray is taken to determine if the cavity is normal and to see if the fluid spills out of your fallopian tubes.
- Ovarian reserve testing. This testing helps determine the quantity of the eggs available for ovulation. This approach often begins with hormone testing early in the menstrual cycle.
- Other hormone testing. Other hormone tests check levels of ovulatory hormones, as well as pituitary hormones that control reproductive processes.
- Imaging tests. Pelvic ultrasound looks for uterine or ovarian disease. Sometimes a sonohysterogram, also called a saline infusion sonogram, is used to see details inside the uterus that are not seen on a regular ultrasound.
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