What is infertility treatment?
Infertility treatment refers to administering of medicine or conducting surgical procedures to people who have problems with getting pregnant in a natural way. In some cases a question of assisted conception arises.
When is it needed?
- The problems may occur due to ovulation disorders, when a woman ovulates infrequently or never at all. They account for 1 in 4 cases of infertility. It can be connected with regulation of reproductive hormones by the hypothalamus or the pituitary gland, or problems in the ovary.
- Damaged or blocked fallopian tubes are another cause of infertility. It keeps sperm from getting to the egg or block the passage of the fertilized egg into the uterus.
- Endometriosis occurs when tissue that normally grows in the uterus implants and grows in other locations. This extra tissue growth — and the surgical removal of it — can cause scarring, which may block fallopian tubes and keep an egg and sperm from uniting.
- Uterine or cervical causes can also take place. Among them are benign polyps or tumors, endometriosis scarring or inflammation, uterine abnormalities present from birth, cervical stenosis.
Sometimes, the cause of infertility is not evident. A combination of several minor factors in both partners can result in unexplained fertility problems. Although it's frustrating to get no definite answer, it may happen that this problem corrects itself with time. Nevertheless, you shouldn't delay treatment of infertility.
What fertility treatments are available?
- Medical – for lack of regular ovulation.
- Surgical – such as treatment for endometriosis, treatment for myoma uteri, treatment for polycystic ovary, treatment for uterus prolapse, repair of the fallopian tubes, or removal of scarring (adhesions) within the womb or abdominal cavity.
- Assisted conception – this may be intrauterine insemination (IUI) or in vitro fertilisation (IVF)
The latter are the two of the most common fertility options. Each of them can be done in infertility treatment clinics.
In case of IUI healthy sperm is collected and inserted directly into a woman’s uterus in the period of ovulation.
During IVF eggs are taken from a woman’s ovaries and fertilized by sperm in a lab, where they develop into embryos.
In case of in-vitro fertilization the treatment of infertility will possibly include such steps as stimulating and retrieving multiple mature eggs, fertilizing them with sperm in a dish in a lab, and implanting the embryos in the uterus several days after fertilization.
Infertility treatment process depends on:
- what's causing the infertility,
- how long a woman has been infertile,
- a woman’s age and her partner's age,
- personal preferences.
To learn more about each treatment, please refer to the correspondent sections of our website.
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