Tired of Seeing Another Negative Pregnancy Test?
Here are 9 signs it may be time to consult with a fertility specialist for infertility testing. It’s better to find out sooner, rather than later, if your pregnancy will require any type of fertility assistance. Please keep in mind: unless you are over the age of 35 or have struggled with infertility in the past, we always advocate trying for at least 6 months using ovulation as the timer before making an appointment with a fertility specialist.
- You are 35 years or older. Before 30, give yourself 12-months or more before you begin looking at your fertility options. From 30 to 35, we say give yourself at least 6 months but don’t wait much longer than that. As much as women hate to face the reality, age definitely matters when it comes to conceiving naturally. Your fertility peak is in your 20s, fertility declines into your 30s and by age 35 to 40, there is a steep drop off.
- Your partner is over the age of 40. Yes, men father children well into their 80s, but it’s not that common. Age matters when it comes to producing sperm with healthy morphology, motility and a high sperm count. If your partner is older and you haven’t gotten pregnant, have his semen analyzed to rule out any issues in that department.
- You have a history of missed periods. We wouldn’t run out and see a specialist because of irregular periods without any other cause. However, if you have tried consistently for six months to a year with no luck – and you have a history of irregular periods – it’s worth having things checked out by a fertility specialist in case PCOS, endometriosis or other undiagnosed issues are complicating things.
- You are diabetic. There is a direct correlation between insulin-resistance and infertility. If you have Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, speak with your OB/GYN to see what she thinks. Depending on your age and medical history, a fertility specialist may be your first stop so a general exam and blood work can assess the situation.
- You’ve battled endometriosis. Endometriosis is one of the leading causes of infertility and often goes undiagnosed. If you have been diagnosed, odds are your symptoms were more severe and this may indicate you will have a more difficult time getting pregnant.
- You have been diagnosed with PCOS. Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is another leading cause of fertility. It is quite the medical mystery and is often completely overlooked by OB/GYNs since there are a wide range of symptoms. However, PCOS often involves insulin-resistance and/or hormone imbalance – both of which can lead to infertility.
- A sperm workup came up “abnormal.” Of course, all of the above involve the female half. In fact, it’s a pretty even 50/50 split when it comes to whose physiology is the source of the infertility. If your partner a had a run-of-the-mill sperm workup and it came back abnormal, schedule an appointment with a fertility specialist ASAP to see determine exactly what is going on and the best course of action.
- You’ve had more than two miscarriages. It’s true that miscarriages are normal. They happen in about 10% to 25% of all recognized pregnancies, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), and that doesn’t count all the fertilized eggs that are miscarried before a woman ever tests positive for pregnancy. However, if you have two or more, your doctor will probably want you to have a few extra tests done to rule out potential infertility issues that may be causing them.
- You have/had uterine fibroid tumors in the past. A history of uterine fibroid tumors can make it more difficult to get pregnant. They can change the size and/or shape of the uterus or cervix which can make conception, implantation and gestation more of a challenge.
Are you having a hard time getting pregnant? Don’t wait. Come in and talk to us. We can meet with you, give you an exam and do some initial blood work to get things started. We are also happy to refer you to top-notch fertility specialists. Contact Overlake OB/GYN today.