There are a lot of misconceptions and myths surrounding infertility – so we have gone through some that are commonly heard. It is important to keep in mind that the science of fertility is constantly evolving and improving. Success rates are at an all-time high and so are your options as a patient. It’s normal to have questions. If you are experiencing problems with conception, please make an appointment with a fertility specialist to discuss your situation and find what’s the best option for you.
1. There is nothing I can do to stop “the clock.” – While it is true that there is nothing one can do to stop the affect of age on our fertility, technology has advanced to allow women to freeze their eggs when they are young and at the peak of fertility. Several years ago vitrification (flash freezing technology as opposed to slow freezing) was introduced and has proven to be a successful and a reliable means to preserving eggs.
2. Most couples can conceive as soon as they start trying – A broad rule of thumb is this; a couple, under the age of 35, who have been trying to get pregnant without success should seek the guidance of a fertility expert. A couple, over the age of 35, who have been trying to get pregnant for over 6 months yet are unsuccessful should see a fertility expert. The truth is that a young couple at the peak of their fertility has only a 25% chance at best each month of conceiving. After trying for a year, 85% of young couples will conceive. It is only after a year of trying that the chance of pregnancy decreases to 5%; and, these couples will likely need medical assistance to get pregnant.
3. A man’s fertility does not decline with age – The only thing that changes is that the older the man, the more difficult it is to conceive due to a decline in semen quality and an increase in DNA fragmentation seen in the sperm. In addition to problems with sperm, male aging is also associated with decreased sexual activity and erectile dysfunction.
4. If a couple cannot get pregnant, it must be because of the female partner – Not necessarily. A male factor issue, such as deficiency in sperm quality or quantity can be the primary problem. Male-related fertility problems do not just affect men who are weak, old or sick. With some couples there are both female-related and male-related fertility factors. Finally, there is the issue of unexplained fertility where a doctor, after testing and treatment is completed, cannot explain why the couple is not successful. It is important that both partners see a specialist when dealing with infertility.
5. If I undergo IVF, I will end up with twins or triplets. – The short answer is no. SET (Single Embryo Transfer) is always an option. One embryo is chosen from the available embryos and placed directly in the uterus or fallopian tube. The remaining embryos can then be frozen for use in future cycles. SET, paired with PGS (Preimplantation Genetic Screening) can potentially improve implantation rates and may reduce spontaneous pregnancy loss.
Source: Pasadena Now