FERTILITY TESTS FOR WOMEN

FERTILITY TESTS FOR WOMEN

If you and your partner are trying to have a baby but haven’t been able to, you may start to wonder if you should get fertility tests. Experts say it’s time to check with a doctor if you’ve had regular sex without birth control for 12 months if you are under the age of 35 and for 6 months if you are over 35.

It’s important for the two of you to go for testing together. When you see your doctor, they’ll probably start by asking questions about your health and lifestyle. They’ll want to know things about you and your partner. Your doctor will take a detailed medical history and conduct a physical exam.

Fertility tests might include:

Ovulation testing.

An at-home, over-the-counter ovulation prediction kit detects the surge in luteinizing hormone (LH) that occurs before ovulation. A blood test for progesterone — a hormone produced after ovulation — can also document that you’re ovulating. Other hormone levels, such as prolactin, also might be checked.

Other hormone testing. Other hormone tests check levels of ovulatory hormones as well as thyroid and pituitary hormones that control reproductive processes. Your doctor might also as to check the levels of follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) and anti-mullerian hormone

Hysterosalpingography.

This is an X-ray is taken to check for problems inside the uterus. The test also shows whether the fluid passes out of the uterus and spills out of your fallopian tubes. If any problems are found, you’ll likely need further evaluation. The HSG can help you learn if your fallopian tubes are blocked or if you have any defects of your uterus. The test is usually done just after your menstrual period.

Ovarian reserve testing.

Fertility Tests for Women

This testing helps determine the quality and quantity of eggs available for ovulation. Women at risk of a depleted egg supply — including women older than 35 — might have this series of blood and imaging tests.

Imaging tests. A pelvic ultrasound looks for uterine or fallopian tube disease. Sometimes a sonohysterogram, also called a saline infusion sonogram, or a hysteroscopy is used to see details inside the uterus that can’t be seen on a regular ultrasound.

Depending on your situation, rarely your testing might include:

Transvaginal ultrasound.

A doctor places an ultrasound “wand” into the vagina and brings it close to the pelvic organs. Using sound waves, they’ll be able to see images of the ovaries and uterus to check for problems there.

Hysteroscopy.

Your doctor puts a thin, flexible tube — with a camera on the end — through the cervix and into the uterus. They can see problems there and take tissue samples if needed.

Laparoscopy.

This minimally invasive surgery involves making a small incision beneath your navel and inserting a thin viewing device to examine your fallopian tubes, ovaries and uterus. A laparoscopy can identify endometriosis, scarring, blockages or irregularities of the fallopian tubes, and problems with the ovaries and uterus.

Genetic testing. Genetic testing helps determine whether there any changes to your genes that may be causing infertility.

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