Did you know that one in eight American couples will struggle with infertility when they try to have a baby? Infertility is a medical condition — not a lifestyle choice — and you are not alone. Many couples who struggle with fertility go on to have a healthy pregnancy with the right treatment.
For women under age 35, infertility is defined as one year of regular, unprotected sex without conception. For women over age 35, it’s six months of trying with no success.
To address infertility, we must first find out the causes. Common fertility tests include analyzing samples in the lab, performing imaging tests such as ultrasounds, and certain minimally invasive procedures like laparoscopy.
Most pregnant women know what to do to protect their unborn babies. Avoid caffeine and alcohol, don’t eat raw meat, don’t sit it a hot tub or sauna, don’t clean the cat litterbox, etc. But did you know there are things you can do while you’re trying to get pregnant (or even thinking about trying) that could enhance your fertility and help make sure your pregnancy is the healthiest it can be?
While many things that are our of our control when it comes to fertility and pregnancy, we can control our lifestyle choices. Here are some tips for self-care along your journey to have a family.
Infertility can have many causes, many of which are beyond our control. But there are some lifestyle changes you can make to increase your chances of getting pregnant. One of most important changes is losing weight, particularly for couples who are considered obese.
Obesity is most often measured by BMI (body mass index). To find your BMI, take your weight divided by height in inches squared, multiplied by 703. You are considered overweight with a BMI between 25.0 and 29.9, and obese with a BMI over 30. Morbidly obese is categorized as 40 BMI or above.
Before some of the recent advances in technology came along, “surgery” was a frightening word. It often meant big risks, one or more overnight stays at the hospital, and a long road to recovery.
Today, many of the most common surgeries for women’s health are outpatient. You can usually expect a quick and easy procedure with few risks, pain easily managed by medication and slight scarring. When it comes to recovery time, you can often be back at work in just a few days.
Thanks to all who came out to our very first Baby Reunion on Sunday, Sept. 9! No one let the rain dampen their mood at this very special event. Patients who achieve successful pregnancies with our treatment “graduate” to their regular OB/GYN after 10 weeks, so our docs may only get to see their patients’ babies on an ultrasound. This reunion gave them a chance to meet many of their patients’ kids in person for the first time.
When Brittany Meyer stopped taking birth control in August 2015, she had no reason to think she and her husband would have trouble getting pregnant. She had always been in good health, worked out regularly and maintained a healthy weight.
But several months passed without getting her period. Brittany’s regular gynecologist eventually diagnosed her with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), a hormonal abnormality that can make it difficult for a woman to ovulate and lead to infertility. Her doctor put her on medication to stimulate her ovaries, and she ended up getting pregnant in April 2016.
When an otherwise healthy young woman has irregular or infrequent periods, she likely has a hormone imbalance. One of the most common hormonal abnormalities is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS).
About 10% of women of childbearing age are diagnosed with PCOS. In addition to irregular menstrual cycles, the condition is characterized by elevated levels of insulin and male hormone (androgen), which may cause acne or excess facial and body hair. But most women with PCOS can still get pregnant with proper treatment.
You’re finally pregnant. After months of trying, whether naturally or with the help of fertility treatments, you see that telltale pink line or plus sign on your home test. You’re taking care of yourself and doing everything right. But a few weeks later, your routine ultrasound doesn’t show a heartbeat. Or you feel some cramps and notice heavy bleeding, so you rush to the doctor to get tested, and she tells you you’ve had a miscarriage. You’re devastated, but still determined to start a family. After your body heals, you keep trying for a baby. But the cycle repeats. Hope turns to despair again and again after multiple miscarriages.
Being able to rely on a compassionate fertility expert meant so much to Mary and her husband on their journey to start a family. After a very long road and numerous obstacles, Mary gave birth to a beautiful baby girl in January 2017, thanks to Dr. Miriam Krause.
When Mary and her husband first came to Fertility and Endocrine Associates in November 2015, the couple had been trying to get pregnant for a year. After her husband’s semen analysis came back normal, Mary’s OB/GYN prescribed three cycles of Clomid, a common medication to stimulate ovulation. But this simple approach to treatment did not result in a successful pregnancy.
When you hear about cases of infertility in the news, much of the discussion focuses on women and the underlying issues that are making it difficult for them to get pregnant. But it’s not always the woman’s problem. In fact, only about one-third of infertility is attributed to the female partner, and one-third to the male partner. The other third is usually caused by a combination of both.