Many patients put off calling their local fertility center because of the assumption that it will cost thousands of dollars or that they will need advanced medical care to treat their infertility. However, along with your OB/GYN, a fertility specialist is just another resource to help you achieve a pregnancy, often time utilizing low tech treatment options. Isaac E. Sasson, MD, PhD (Chesterbrook, PA) tells patients to “think of it as simply gathering information. You are going to learn about yourself and about all the ways we can help.”
When to Call a Fertility Specialist
Talking to a trusted medical professional, such as your gynecologist, should always be your first step. Oftentimes, your gynecologist can offer an introduction to your fertility window – the 6 days leading to ovulation – and how often you should have intercourse for the best chances of conception.
If you are under 35, it is recommended to try on your own for up to a year prior to seeing a specialist. Over 35, the time frame reduces to 6 months. And over 40, it is recommended to see a fertility specialist immediately.
What to Expect at a Fertility Specialist
At Shady Grove Fertility Center, after the initial consultation, all patients undergo initial fertility testing to test for male factor infertility, uterine and tubal anatomy, and ovarian function.
The test results, in combination with your medical history, will help determine the treatment plan your physician and you decide to pursue.
Some of the most common causes of infertility, including ovulation dysfunction, male factor, and unexplained infertility, are often recommended to start with low tech treatment options, such as oral medication or intrauterine insemination (IUI). Read more about diagnosis and treatment options.
Half of all of the treatment cycles performed at Shady Grove Fertility are IUIs. “In 2012 to date, nearly 1,000 patients became pregnant using low tech treatments,” says Dr. Isaac Sasson.
Oral Medications to Treat Infertility
Many female patients may start taking oral medications to stimulate ovulation, such as Clomid, while still under the care of their OB/GYN. Along with timed intercourse, many patients will find success – usually within the first 3 cycles.
The advantage of taking oral medications while under the care of a fertility specialist, is that the patient’s cycle will be closely monitored to check the size and number of follicles present. This can help reduce the risk of multiples.
Low Tech Treatment Option for Infertility
Intrauterine Insemination, or an IUI, is a very common low-tech treatment option for patients experiencing infertility. Similar to the oral medication protocol, the female partner will take medication to help her develop several mature eggs. At the time of ovulation, she will be inseminated with a sample of her partner’s sperm. Couples may also be directed to have intercourse in the same time frame.
“For most women, the insemination is no more uncomfortable or complicated than a regular visit to the ob/gyn,” says Dr. Sasson. “Furthermore, the couple can still be sexually active up until the time of the insemination to increase their chances.”
Affordable Treatment Options
Low tech treatment options for infertility, such as oral medication and IUI, are the most affordable treatment options available. Additionally, these treatments are more likely to be covered by insurance.
For patients without insurance coverage, Shady Grove Fertility offers several discount programs to help make fertility treatment more affordable.
For more information or to schedule an appointment with one of our physicians, please speak with one of our New Patient Liaisons by calling 877-971-7755.