When to see a doctorInfertility is a medical condition defined by failure to achieve a clinical pregnancy after a certain period of time of regular unprotected sexual intercourse, often also taking your age into account.[The common guidelines used by physicians are shared in the table below, however being proactive about your future fertility is something we encourage. A fertility assessment can be done at any time, it's never too early to learn about your reproductive health.
There are other common symptoms of infertility such as:
- irregular or no periods
- painful or heavy periods
- symptoms of hormone fluctuations
- pain during sex.
These symptoms are sometimes related to other underlying conditions. If you have concerns it’s important to consult with your doctor.
The initial female fertility assessment includes a detailed medical history, a general physical exam, specific tests, including:
Your Anova specialist will order a series of blood tests to check your hormone levels at different points along your menstrual cycle. These tests will allow us to assess how and when you ovulate, as well as analyse your hormonal imbalances. We will be checking the levels of the hormones associated with ovulation, such as:
- Luteinizing hormone (LH): stimulates the release of the egg from the follicles (ovulation)
- Progesterone: stabilizes the uterine lining for implantation of a fertilized egg and supports early pregnancy.
Your doctor may also run tests to check the levels of other hormones that may provide insight on the number of eggs available in ovaries, also known as ovarian reserve, such as anti-mullerian hormone, AMH, Estrogen, and FSH.
Your hormone levels along with ultrasound scan of your ovaries and uterus will allow us to identify your ovulation pattern and detect your “fertile window”, the exact time with the highest chance to conceive.
What are the treatment options?
At Anova, we take pride in creating a personalized treatment protocol based on your medical history, diagnostic test results, age, personal preferences, and family building goals.
Infertility is a complex condition, and we will use one or multiple different treatment methods, such as:
- Cycle monitoring and timed intercourse – is a first line, low intervention treatment option that will allow you to identify your ‘fertile window’ and increase your chances to conceive by having sexual intercourse during that time.
- Ovulation induction – is a procedure that uses medication to increase the number of eggs ovulated per cycle, which may improve the chances of pregnancy
- IUI – is the process of placing sperm in a woman’s uterus. This procedure place the sperm closer to the fallopian tube to increase the chances of fertilization by bypassing the vagina and cervix, which both have harsh environments for sperm.
- IVF – is the process of fertilization that occurs in a lab, where embryologists carefully select and combine the egg and sperm.
- Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) –A form of IVF where the sperm is injected directly into an egg to fertilize it in an IVF procedure
As part of a fertility assessment, the team of fertility specialists at Anova will conduct comprehensive diagnostics testing and tailor a course of treatment that is right for you. Some of these tests are covered by OHIP, so if you have concerns please don’t hesitate to contact us.