When couples experience troubles with fertility, their first instinct may be to go to an artificial insemination clinic. While this is certainly a viable option for many couples, it is important to understand that there are many treatments available to improve your chances of getting pregnant. With proper testing, fertility specialists can help determine which method will be best for your unique situation. Here’s a closer look at some of the most common fertility treatments available.
For many couples, struggles with fertility can actually be resolved with a simple oral medication. Most physicians will prescribe either Clomid or Femara, which are then taken orally for five days, starting on the third day of the woman’s ovulation cycle. These medications help the body produce more follicle-stimulating hormone, which in turn increases the likelihood of getting pregnant during ovulation.
Because this treatment method is less invasive (and much less expensive) than other options, it is often the first to be recommended for couples struggling to conceive. The medication is typically used for three to six cycles.
When medication alone doesn’t seem to be helping, artificial insemination can be an effective treatment method. Patients continue to take either Clomid or Femara. Around the tenth day of the ovulation cycle, doctors will perform an ultrasound to determine when insemination should be attempted.
The artificial insemination process begins with an Ovidrel injection, which helps trigger the release of mature eggs. Approximately 36 hours after ovulation, a small tube is used to artificially insert sperm into the uterus. Average success rates hover around 40 percent.
IVF (or in vitro fertilization) is the most complex fertility treatment. The woman receives both hormone injections and an injection to trigger ovulation. Eggs are retrieved in a clean lab environment. Sperm from the male partner is also collected at this time, and the sperm and eggs are then combined in a specialized lab.
After fertilization occurs, any resulting embryos are cultured in the lab for a few days before being placed in the uterus using a catheter. Embryos with the highest chance of resulting in a viable pregnancy receive top priority during this placement.
Starting a Family
Navigating the ups and downs of fertility can be challenging, both physically and emotionally. Thankfully, there are more treatment options today than ever before to help couples achieve their dream of starting a family. By consulting with medical professionals, you will be able to find the option that gives you the best chance of success.