Infertility is a very frustrating and troubling conditions for both the woman and the man in a relationship. It can be defined as the inability to conceive a child for any person who has attempted a pregnancy for one year or more without success or the inability to carry a pregnancy to term, although conception is possible.
The aim of the infertility evaluation is to discover the reason for his or her infertility and to give a prognosis for future fertility. Both partners (if there is a partner) are asked at this time to have an initial consultation with Dr. Strobel. You will be asked such questions as your past medical history, your past surgical history, your current health exposure to toxic or radiation, your sexual development, use of birth control, any pregnancies or impregnations and your sexual practices.
Infertility is a shared concern wherever the problem may reside. Limiting the evaluation to one member of a couple cannot be successful. Also, there is a male component to infertility in up to 40% of couples!
The standard tests and their order of succession, purpose and the procedures involved will be discussed at the visit. Scheduling of tests may vary according to your individual circumstances but the general rule of thumb is to proceed from the simple and low-risk tests, to those tests which may be more invasive. It is absolutely necessary that both partners be investigated simultaneously. Laboratory tests will be done at the time of the initial interview, including extensive hormonal profiles of the male and female.
Male partners will usually be asked to have a semen analysis at some point after the initial visit. This is done through a local hospital laboratory. If there is an abnormality, the male partner may be referred for further evaluation with a urologist.
Female partners may be asked to schedule a hysterosalingogram or HSG to evaluate the internal shape of the uterus as well as to make sure that the Fallopian tubes are open and working properly. These infertility tests are often NOT covered by insurance, however.