When is the right time to learn more about visiting fertility clinics near me? What do I need to know before I schedule a visit with a fertility clinic therapist?
I don’t want to create controversy, but if you’re going through fertility challenges going to your primary doctor is like having a compound fracture and expecting your primary to be able to fix it. It’s a specific challenge and there are doctors trained specially to address it. This is not a coincidence.
The issue is, starting with your primary for months of treatments, means starting over when you decide to go to a fertility clinic and reproductive medicine doctor. Generally speaking, you will have to hit the restart button on all labs and testing. As if the emotional rollercoaster of trying to conceive wasn’t intense enough.
When it may be time to contact a fertility clinic
When you want a baby and it isn’t happening and you’ve reached out to a medical professional for help, every month feels like a year because you’ve already been waiting for it to be your turn. To avoid wasting time, check with the fertility clinic and your insurance company to learn what the rules, expectations, and perimeters are. For example, my insurance company would pay their part for any testing and treatments up until the ‘infertility diagnosis’. Nonetheless, reproductive specialists can help prior to an infertility diagnosis if you are concerned that your challenges are related to underlying causes such as thyroid issues, hormonal imbalances, poly cystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), endometriosis, blocked fallopian tubes, sperm health in your partner, ovulation disorder, etc.
What I want to impress upon you, is that getting pregnant is a normal and natural occurrence for the female body. If it isn’t happening, it is best to rule out any underlying conditions. If there is an underlying condition, addressing it and correcting it could very well mean a shortcut to that positive pregnancy test.
So, when should you reach out to fertility specialists?
Your age and underlying health conditions are all a part of the equation. If you have been trying to conceive (TTC) for 6-12 months with no success, having a conversation with your primary to learn about what their next steps would be can be very helpful. You can also call up a reproductive specialist and schedule a consultation. Most fertility clinics will be happy to consult with you to get more information from you and give more information to you. Information is power. Don’t underestimate the peace of mind that just knowing what your next step is if you decide to take it.
If you are local to the Fargo/Grand Forks area, a great place to start is Sanford Reproductive Medicine Clinic in Fargo, ND. I’ve also worked with several clients who have gone to the Center for Reproductive Medicine in Minneapolis, MN.
Why should you reach out to fertility clinics?
Get the tests! Lab testing for a hormonal panel to learn about what might be going on is simple and can be very informative. This is a straightforward blood draw and lab test. Keep in mind that they should be having you test on cycle specific days. Cycle day three (full flow – when bleeding starts – is cycle day one) is generally the day to test for baseline. Googling to have a general understanding of what lab tests will be done for fertility challenges and the range that is considered ‘normal’ is a great place to start. Will they all say the same thing? NO! But that’s the point. Understanding that different fertility professionals may say different things can help you understand where your doctor lands. Cycle day 21 is another frequently used test day to determine if you did indeed ovulate.
Next step tests often include:
A semen analysis for your guy and a hysterosalpingogram (HSG) for you. A HSG is a test that the infertility specialist will run a tube through your cervix and inject dye into your uterus. They are looking to see if that will move through your fallopian tubes and spill out. If it doesn’t, that could indicate a blocked tube. A block tubed means that the egg isn’t getting to your uterus to come together with the sperm.
Another recommended test is often a Sonohysterogram (SHG). The infertility doctor will run a tube through your cervix and fill your uterus with saline. Using an internal camera they will be able to see what the inside of your uterus looks like. Hoping to rule out any fibroids or growths in the endometrial lining which could hinder implantation.
Are there more tests? Yes! My friend, do your research! The tests I mentioned are just a few of the options and generally speaking are a good place to start. Your research could certainly start with any reproductive specialty clinic and interviewing potential fertility specialists that you would like to consider working with. Choose a doctor and a clinic that makes you feel comfortable and safe to ask any and all questions. Whoever you choose should be a part of your team. They are not calling the shots. YOU are!
Once you choose an infertility specialist to work with, together you can determine the best plan of action. I highly suggest that you DO the testing BEFORE you begin any medications or ‘treatments’. There isn’t a whole lot that is more devastating than doing 6 rounds of Clomid only to find out that you have a blocked tube. When you know what is going on, it is far easier to treat it.
Sending all the baby dust and love your way!