Female Fertility: Finding the Right Treatment

Are you trying to get pregnant and worried you may be infertile? If you answered “yes,” you are among the hundreds of women in America who are concerned about infertility and conceiving a child. Women facing fertility problems today have many more options for treatment than in the past. From fertility drugs to acupuncture, there are many choices. It can be a challenge to make the choice that is right for you. To help you find the right approach for you, we offer a brief overview of some fertility treatments available.

Some Fertility Treatment Options:

Fertility medications
Fertility drugs are used to regulate your reproductive hormones over a period of three to six months. The success rate ranges from 20 to 60 percent, and the drugs can increase your likelihood of having twins or multiples. There are also some associated side effects (hot flashes, cramping, bloating, etc.)

If you have any blockages in your fallopian tubes, scar tissue, ovarian cysts or other issues that may be preventing conception, surgery can help fix those problems.  The success rate ranges from 40 to 60 percent for endometriosis or scar tissue treatments. The success rate for fallopian tube clearance treatments ranges from 10 to 90 percent.

In vitro fertilization (IVF)
IVF is generally used with fertility drugs that stimulate the ovaries to produce eggs. These eggs are retrieved from the ovaries and placed together with sperm in a specially-prepared test tube until fertilization takes place. One to three embryos will be placed in the uterus after fertilization. The success rate for IVF ranges widely, from six to roughly 30 percent, depending upon the age of the woman receiving treatment. Women under age 35 have the best chances of conceiving with IVF or another assisted reproduction technology (ART) such as gamete intrafallopian transfer (GIFT) or zygote intrafallopian transfer (ZIFT).

Artificial insemination
Also known as intrauterine insemination (IUI), this procedure involves placing sperm directly into the uterus. This treatment is often used where there is a problem with cervical mucus or male infertility. Though lower cost than some of the other options, the success rate for IUI ranges from four to roughly 17 percent – not very high.

Other fertility treatment options to consider include alternative medicine modalities such as acupuncture and herbs, egg freezing and egg or embryo donation, sperm injection (ICSI) and surrogacy or gestational carriers.

Click here to find a fertility specialist and explore your options for fertility treatments.


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