May 31, 2017

Unexplained Infertility

What to do when faced with a  diagnosis of Unexplained Infertility

When a couple is referred to a specialist at a fertility clinic, the usual first steps include a battery of tests: bloodwork, ultrasound, hysterosalpinogram, and a semen analysis.  The purpose of these tests is to investigate the reason behind why conception has not occurred.  Unfortunately, all too often (between 15 and 30% of the time1) the fertility specialist will come back with a diagnosis of unexplained infertility, meaning no direct causes could be found from the test results.

At this point, a couple may feel confused with no answers offered and perhaps disappointed when the fertility specialist offers them only two solutions – IUI (intra-uterine insemination) or IVF (in-vitro fertilization).  Unfortunately, the costs of these treatments can be enormous – physically, emotionally, mentally, and financially.  In addition, the success rates of IUI and IVF depending on age and other health factors are not great.

What then should a couple do if they are seeking options to increase their chances of success of natural conception prior to considering IUI or IVF?

As a Naturopathic Doctor with a special interest and years of experience in fertility, this is the most common scenario I encounter.  My job is to conduct a more thorough investigation to uncover other factors in health known to play an important role in one’s potential for fertility.  These health factors may include an in-depth look at nutritional factors, lifestyle factors, stress management, hormone balance, inflammation, and toxicity.  The plan for each patient is always individualized and accounts for every element of one’s health to optimize fertility and improve success.

Although the overall goal is to achieve a pregnancy, support for the quality of eggs and sperm is also vital for a healthier pregnancy and a healthier child.

With the expertise and direction of a fertility-focused Naturopathic Doctor, you will have a much improved chance of succeeding in your goal of becoming pregnant, having a healthy pregnancy, and becoming amazing parents to a healthy, vibrant child.

– Dr. Patti

1. Obstet Gynecol Surv. 2014 Feb;69(2):109-15.

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