Many couples seeking to become parents experience anxiety after the first month of trying to conceive. Some already at this stage begin to wonder: “how to know if I have infertility”, how to undergo fertility check, ask questions to your gynecologist. However, their worries are in vain.
Diagnosis of infertility is possible only after 12 months of unsuccessful attempts to conceive a child in couples where the woman’s age is under 35 years. And only after six months in couples where the woman’s age is from 35 years. Before the deadlines there is no need to panic and think endlessly, how to know if I have infertility
Before checking female fertility or undergo male fertility test you should know that only 30% of couples will get pregnancy in the first three months of regular intercourse without contraception. After 6 months, 60% of couples will see two stripes. The remaining 10% learn about successful conception at 10-12 months. If a happy event did not happen, do not draw any conclusions, but simply consult a gynecologist (to find out how to undergo a fertility test) and reproductive specialist (to find out how to check female fertility and undergo male fertility test).
How to know if I have infertility: fertility test for women and men
If you want to know how to test female fertility at the preclinical stage at home, then all you can do is to assess the presence / absence of ovulation. There are two ways: measuring basal temperature (a fairly reliable way, how to test a woman’s fertility) or using test strips from the pharmacy. However, if you have not done this before, it is better not to waste time and consult a doctor.
After visiting doctors for fertility assessments men and women will be prescribed examinations.
Important! Before undergoing a fertility test, analyze your lifestyle for possible prosaic causes of difficulty conceiving: intense physical activity, sleep and rest, overweight or critically low body weight, bad habits, working conditions. Sometimes it is these reasons, and not pathological conditions at all, that prevent the occurrence of pregnancy.
Female fertility check
At the first stage fertility check includes:
- General examination of the therapist, blood test, determination of body mass index.
- Examination by a gynecologist, examination of the mammary glands.
- Cytological studies (smear from the vagina, cervix, cervical canal).
At the second stage female fertility checks the following is investigated:
- Ultrasound of the pelvic organs (assessment of the thickness of the endometrium, the condition of the fallopian tubes, the presence of the corpus luteum, and hence ovulation).
- Tests for STIs.
- Fertility hormone analysis.
Fertility hormone test in turn means:
- Estradiol level. Without it, the proper fixation of the fetus in the uterus is impossible. It is preferable to give blood for test on days 2-5 or 21-23 of the cycle, because its level varies depending on the phase of the cycle. Norm: 57-226 pg / ml (follicular phase); 127-476 pg/ml (24-36 hours before ovulation) and 77-226 pg/ml (luteinizing phase).
- Progesterone level. Hormone that ensures the normal course of pregnancy. With a deficiency, an interruption or fading of pregnancy occurs. It is preferable to test it on the 22-23rd day of the cycle. Norm indicators: 0.48-9.41 nmol / l.
- Prolactin. This substance contributes to the production of milk. It is better to pass the analysis on the 21-25th day of the cycle. Norm indicators: 6.3-49 pg / ml. An increase in concentration may be a sign of polycystic ovaries and other pathologies.
- Follicle stimulating hormone (FSH). Fertility assessment is impossible without an assessment of the ovulatory ability that this hormone provides. Blood sampling is best scheduled for 2-4 days of the cycle. Norm: about 1.39-9.9 IU / ml.
- luteinizing hormone (LH). Together with the previous hormone, it forms the corpus luteum and makes ovulation possible. It is best to test it on days 3-8 or 19-21 of the cycle. Norm: 14-95.6 honey / ml.
- Testosterone. Female fertility check has to be done with an assessment of the male hormone. In low concentration, it is needed by the female body. Exceeding the norm leads to problems with conception. It is visually manifested by excessive hair growth, coarsening of the voice. It is better to evaluate its concentration on the 6th-7th day of the cycle. Norm: 0.45-3.17 pg / ml.
- Anti-Müllerian hormone (AMH). Another way how to test female fertility is getting tested for AMG. Norm: 4-6.8.
- Thyroid hormones. They allow both to test a woman’s fertility, and notice a lot of pathologies. Fertility test for women includes a thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) test. Tests for these thyroid hormones can be done on any day of the cycle. TSH norm indicators: 0.2-3.8 mU / l.
Fertility hormone test also implies the determination of the concentration of thyroxine, cortisol and 17-ketosteroids. You can give blood for test any day.
We have described the full picture, how to test a woman’s fertility. According to the results of the fertility test for women the doctor will decide on the necessary correction of the condition or advise you to turn to assisted reproductive technologies.
Let us move on to describing how to test fertility in men.
Male fertility test
In parallel with examinations of a woman it is recommended to undergo fertility test for men. It includes the following types of examinations and tests:
- The main male hormone that ensures the production of sperm. Norm indicators: 4.10-32.92 nmol / l (16-21 years old), 5.72-26.14 nmol / l (21-50 years old), 3-27.35 nmol / l (50+ years old).
- The female hormone in small doses is necessary for the male body. It nourishes tissues and helps secrete seminal fluid. Norm indicators: 40-161 pmol / l.
- Affects the quality and quantity of spermatozoa, regulates water-salt metabolism. Norm indicators: 86-324 µIU/ml.
- Ensures the production of viable spermatozoa. Normal values: 0.7 to 11.2 mIU ml.
- LH is an auxiliary substance that supports the normal production of testosterone. Norm indicators:1.5-9 U / l.
Talking about how to test fertility in a man, it should be noted that a test for STIs is needed. Male fertility test cannot be carried out without spermogram. Before the test, it is recommended to refrain from sexual intercourse for at least three days. The doctor will assess the quantity and quality of spermatozoa. If the indicators are unsatisfactory, the doctor will prescribe treatment or advise using donor biomaterial for conception.
How to check fertility: additional examinations that a doctor can prescribe for a man
In addition to the standard set of examinations, a man can be prescribed:
- CT scan of the brain;
- x-ray of vas deferens;
- Ultrasound of the prostate;
- Testicular biopsy.
The latter method allows to extract spermatozoa suitable for fertilization even in case of severe injuries or operations to remove part of an organ.
Similar to test strips for fertility assessments for women, devices for evaluating the quality of sperm are produced for men. However, their result shows only the presence of spermatozoa in principle, without taking into account their mobility, chromosomal abnormalities, etc. That is why fertility check cannot be limited to a pharmacy test.
Diagnosis of infertility: what to do if the diagnosis is confirmed
After you have underwent fertility test for couples and you have been diagnosed with infertility, the first thing to do is to maintain peace of mind. This does not mean that you will not have children, it means that the path to them will simply be longer than others.
The next thing to do is contact the reproductive center. Get ready to undergo again fertility test for couples to clarify the diagnosis and determine the treatment regimen. The narrow specialization of the doctors of the center and participation in international conferences allow them to master the latest methods of treating the most complex reproductive problems. Therefore, insurmountable situations that exclude the possibility of becoming parents are almost a myth.
Before undergoing a fertility test, provide the attending physician with complete information from your personal and family anamnesis and partner’s anamnesis, the results of examinations. This will help to comprehensively analyze your individual situation and choose the most effective treatment tactics.
Feskov Human Reproduction Group reminds that the inability to conceive a child and other reproductive problems can be overcome by a variety of methods: treatment, the use of donor biomaterials, the services of a surrogate mother. If you want a child, we will find a way to make your dream come true.