Treatments for Infertility

Many couples experiencing infertility problems can often be successfully treated by:

  • addressing lifestyle issues

  • medical therapies,

  • surgical techniques

Both women and men can contribute to difficulties in falling pregnant

How is infertility treated?

Dr Cook will suggest a treatment suitable for your diagnosed problem.

Fertility treatment involves use of different artificial methods to help a woman conceive in conditions where she is unable to conceive naturally.

Depending on the test results, different treatments can be suggested. 85-90% of infertility cases are treated with drugs or surgery.

Ovulation Tracking

Performed through Monash IVF Bondi. This will involve several ultrasounds and blood tests at regular clinics which are held in the mornings. This monitoring will pin-point ovulation and assist with the correct peri-ovulatory timing of intercourse. The ultrasound will ensure the lining of the uterus is adequate for a pregnancy to implant. A progesterone level one week after ovulation will ensure an adequate luteal phase. All these blood tests and ultrasounds provide valuable information on egg development and ovulation during a natural menstrual cycle.

Ovulation Induction

This is given to women who have patent tubes and whose partners have a relatively normal semen analysis. Fertility drugs may be recommended to stimulate and regulate ovulation, in women who are infertile due to ovarian disorders. These drugs include tablets  - clomiphene citrate (clomid), metformin.

Another type of medication is FSH injections. These are given using a pen into the fat layer of the abdominal wall on a daily basis. The fertility nurses from Monash IVF Bondi will provide detailed explanations on how this is done.

These medications used for ovulation induction are given in conjunction with ovulation tracking through Monash IVF Bondi. Again, this will ensure the correct peri-ovulatory timing of intercourse.

It is important to talk with Dr Cook about the drug to be used. You should understand the drug’s benefits and side effects. Depending on the type of fertility drug and the dosage of the drug used, multiple births (such as twins) can occur in some women.

Intra- uterine Insemination (IUI)

IUI involves placing sperm in a woman’s uterus to facilitate fertilisation (fusion of egg and sperm). IUI gives the sperm a head start in entering the womb, but will still have to reach and fertilise the egg on its own. The sperm travel up through the uterus and fertilise the egg in the outer one third of the Fallopian Tube.

Who is suitable for IUI?

IUI is most effective for women in their 20s or early 30s with an ovulation defect (such as polycystic ovarian syndrome) or where there is male ejaculation dysfunction. The sperm should be relatively normal. Both tubes should be patent.  IUI is a fertility treatment indicated for couples with conditions such as unexplained infertility or abnormal/borderline sperm count or motility.

Intra-uterine Insemination Procedure

The sperm is spun down to achieve a very concentrated sample. This sample is inserted directly into the uterus through a catheter (long tube). After the procedure, you will be asked to remain lying on your back for a few minutes. This entire procedure may cause minimal discomfort and is completed in a short time.

The success of IUI is increased when performed in conjunction with OI (ovulation induction). This will involve injections taken each night from day 5 of the cycle. The process of ovulation is monitored by tracking through Monash IVF Bondi. This consists of 3-4 visits in the first 10-12 days of the cycle. Ovulation can be pinpointed by blood tests and ultrasound of the ovaries.

Risks and Complications of IUI

IUI is relatively safe and is not associated with serious complications. Light vaginal bleeding may occur due to the placement of the catheter inside the uterus. Infection due to the placement of the catheter inside the uterus is very rare.

IUI by itself may not be associated with a risk of multiple pregnancies. However, when coupled with ovulation-inducing medication, you are at a higher risk of multiple pregnancies.