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Fertility treatment options

Your treatment options will vary according to the cause of your fertility problems. Your doctor may suggest trying the least invasive procedures first.  Treatments such as in vitro fertilisation (IVF) are well known and increasingly successful, but they can be expensive and complex procedures.  Drug treatment and surgery can be very effective on their own, depending on what’s causing your fertility problems. For 25 per cent of couples, the cause of their infertility can’t be determined. This is known as unexplained fertility.  The right treatment for you depends on many factors, including: 

  • your age
  • the cause of your or your partner’s fertility problem
  • the quality of your partner’s sperm
  • how long you and your partner have had fertility problems
  • whether you have had a previous pregnancy

Here are the types of fertility treatments that are available, from the least invasive to the most invasive: 

  • Fertility drugs. If your or your partner’s hormones are out of balance or you are having problems with ovulation, these drugs may get your reproductive system back on track.
  • Intrauterine insemination (IUI). A concentrated dose of your partner’s sperm is placed in your womb (uterus). IUI is a kind of shortcut for sperm, and can help couples who have a physical or psychological problem having sex for conception. Donor sperm may be used for this, if needed. It can also be used when a man has HIV, as his sperm can be washed clear of the virus before insemination. It’s also used by same-sex couples who want to have a baby.
  • Surgery. This is an option for women with blocked tubes, endometriosis, fibroids, and ovarian cysts, all of which can be associated with fertility problems. However, if you have blocked tubes or endometriosis you may also benefit from IVF. The decision to opt for surgery or IVF is an individual one. Your doctor will discuss with you the advantages and disadvantages of each option, so that you and your partner can decide which is best for you.
  • Assisted conception treatments. Fertility drugs and other conventional treatment options are combined with high-tech procedures, such as egg collection, to treat both male and female fertility problems as well as unexplained infertility. Procedures include IVF, intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), and using donated sperm or donated eggs or embryos. Surrogacy is another option.

Original article: https://www.babycentre.co.uk/a4089/fertility-treatment-options