Navigating your way through infertility is hard. It puts stress on you both physically and mentally and can strain even the healthiest of relationships. According to the National Institutes of Health, about 12% of couples in the U.S. will have trouble getting and staying pregnant.
Infertility is heartbreaking, but know that you have options. Thanks to advancements in medical treatments, there are several methods available to help you achieve your dream of having a baby. Let’s take a look at the best treatment options for female infertility.
Treatment Options for Infertility
Whether an infertility treatment will work for you depends on many different factors. It’s best to talk to your healthcare provider about which treatment might be right for you. When you see the success rates of certain treatments, don’t be discouraged because they seem so low. It’s important to keep in mind that the chances of a healthy, fertile couple becoming pregnant are only about 25% during any given month.
Support your reproductive health with Pink Stork’s Fertility Support capsules. They provide essential vitamins and nutrients to help your natural reproductive cycle. If you’re going through infertility treatments, make sure you talk to your healthcare provider before starting any over-the-counter vitamin or supplement.
Depending on the cause of your infertility, certain medications are available to help. Ovulation stimulating medications, such as clomid and letrozole, force your body to ovulate so you’ll release an egg. If PCOS and insulin resistance are interfering with ovulation, your healthcare provider may prescribe metformin. Metformin improves insulin resistance which can restart ovulation.
Intrauterine Insemination (IUI)
IUI is a type of artificial insemination. Sperm, from your partner or a donor, are washed and concentrated before being placed into your uterus at the same time as ovulation. IUI is often used in combination with ovulation stimulating drugs to increase your chances of sperm and an egg meeting up.
The success rate of IUI for a healthy person with two functioning ovaries and fallopian tubes is about 7% to 10% each cycle. If IUI is used in combination with ovulation stimulating drugs, the success rate jumps to 15% to 25%.
In Vitro Fertilization (IVF)
IVF involves a series of procedures to produce an embryo to be placed back inside the uterus for, hopefully, implantation. During IVF, a mature egg is collected and combined with sperm in a lab to form an embryo. The embryo is then placed back inside the uterus in the hopes that it will implant and result in a healthy, full term pregnancy.
IVF has the highest success rate of any assisted reproductive procedure. Age plays a big role in whether IVF will work for you or not. Women under the age of 35 have a 50% success rate but that number drops to less than 4% once you hit age 42.
In some cases, a donor egg is used during IVF. Donor eggs are used if good quality eggs cannot be retrieved from the female partner or if there’s the possibility of a genetic disorder being passed along. Using a donor egg for IVF can result in a higher success rate, especially if you’re older and aren’t producing good quality eggs anymore. Some IVF clinics boast of more than a 50% success rate when using donor eggs.
Surrogacy or Gestational Carrier
A surrogate or gestational carrier is a woman who carries your baby for you. There are many reasons why a woman may not be able to be pregnant and carry her own child. If you have functioning ovaries, your IVF clinic can retrieve your own eggs to be fertilized and transferred. Using a surrogate gives you the opportunity to have a child that is biologically yours but carried by another woman.
Success rates of using a gestational carrier are variable but generally hover around 50% if the harvested egg is from a woman under 35.
Freezing Your Eggs
Freezing your eggs is a great option to consider if you’d like to have a child in the future but not for many years. It’s also something to think about if you have a family history of early menopause, endometriosis, or if you’re about to undergo cancer treatments that could affect your future reproductive ability. Eggs are retrieved when you’re younger and frozen until you want to have a baby. When you’re ready, the egg is fertilized with sperm (either from your partner or a donor) and then placed inside your uterus. Women in their 20’s and early 30’s have higher success rates of retrieving and storing healthy eggs.
What’s The Right Fertility Treatment For Me?
Every case of infertility is unique and it’s best to talk to your healthcare provider about your options. They know your medical history and can answer any questions or concerns you have about certain treatments. Additionally, fertility treatments can be very expensive and are sometimes not fully covered by your insurance. It’s an unfortunate downside, but cost may be a deciding factor in which treatments you choose to go with.