Infertility is defined as the inability to conceive after a year of regular intercourse without contraception. Both men and women are equally affected by infertility. Infertility can be caused by problems with sperm production in men, egg production in women, or both. Sometimes the cause is unknown. Infertility also refers to the biological inability of a person to contribute to conception. In contrast, infertility in a couple is defined as the inability to conceive together for twelve months or more.
The treatment depends on whether it’s male infertility, female infertility, both, or unknown. If it’s your first time trying to conceive, you should try for one year before consulting with a Houston Infertility specialist. Here are some treatments you can take advantage of if you have been diagnosed with infertility.
Intrauterine Insemination (IUI)
IUI is a simple procedure that involves placing sperm inside a woman’s uterus close to her time of ovulation. This allows for optimal conditions for fertilization and implantation to occur. IUI is used to treat infertility in women who have an issue with their cervical mucus or sperm transport. It’s also used for women with mild male factor infertility. IUI is less invasive, less expensive, and has a quicker recovery time than other fertility treatments. The doctor will put a catheter through the cervix into the uterus to inject donor sperm directly into the uterus during this procedure. You can undergo IUI more than once to increase your chances of pregnancy.
Cervical Insemination (CI)
Just like in Intrauterine Insemination, donor sperm is injected into the cervical mucus near a woman’s cervix before ovulation. The significant difference between IUI and CI is that the sperm is not placed directly into the uterus. You can also use this insemination method to correct cervical mucus issues or if you cannot correct male infertility.
IVF (In-Vitro Fertilization)
IVF is a medical procedure that involves removing eggs from a woman’s ovaries and fertilizing them with sperm outside the body. The fertilized eggs are then placed in a woman’s uterus to increase the chance of pregnancy. IVF is used to treat infertility due to ovulation problems, uterine or fallopian tube disorders, endometriosis, male infertility, and unexplained infertility.
Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI)
Doctors can inject a single sperm directly into an egg if male infertility is an issue. ICSI is the most effective method of correcting male infertility and avoiding female infertility treatment. It’s also used when there is a low number of motile sperm in semen analysis.
Hormone therapy treats female infertility due to ovulation problems, endometriosis, or polycystic ovarian disease. It’s also used for unexplained infertility. Doctors can prescribe fertility drugs that help stimulate ovulation by controlling the hormone system in your body.
Ovarian stimulation is used to induce ovulation, making more eggs available for fertilization. You can also use donor eggs for this procedure. This treatment is often combined with IUI or IVF/ICSI.
In summary, infertility is the inability to conceive after a year of regular intercourse without contraception. Various infertility treatments include intrauterine insemination, cervical insemination, IVF, ICSI, ovarian stimulation, and hormone therapy. The treatment depends on whether it’s male infertility, female infertility, both, or unknown.