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How long should a couple try to conceive before consulting a doctor? What are the fertility treatme

Recordings on 27/07/2017 on FM Kiss 92.

How long should a couple try to conceive before consulting a doctor?

80% of couples who have regular sexual intercourse (that is, every two to three days) and who do not use contraception will get pregnant within a year.


Majority of couples 92% will achieve a pregnancy within two years of trying. Chances of conceiving successfully decreases with the increasing age of the mother.


When to get help from a doctor, depends on the age of woman. If the woman is under 35 years old, the couple should consider getting medical help if they are not successful after 12 months of trying. As fertility declines with older mothers, if the woman is above 35 years old, the couple should seek help if they have no luck after 6 months.

What are the fertility treatment options available and what are the chances of getting pregnant with treatment?

Fertility treatment options depends on the underlying cause of the infertility. Female factors may include problems with ovulation and blocked tubes. Male factors may include sperm numbers and quality. About 15% of infertility are unexplained.

Fertility drugs

For woman with ovulation problems, drugs may be given to stimulate egg growth and ovulation. Clomid (a non hormonal drug) is commonly given to stimulate egg growth and ovulation. Approximately 7 out of 10 patients treated with Clomid will ovulate and 4 out of 10 will conceive.


Medical procedures

Depending on the course of the infertility, medical and surgical procedures may be required.


Surgery – Surgery (usually done via the key hole approach) may be needed to unblock fallopian tubes, resect fibroids and treat endometriosis. Endometriosis is a painful disorder in which tissue that normally lines the inside of the womb (endometrium) grows outside the womb.



Intrauterine insemination (IUI): Often used in cases where sperm numbers or quality might be an issue, IUI involves inserting a tiny tube to carry sperm directly into a woman's womb through the vagina. Often, the woman may also take fertility drugs to help her ovaries produce one or more eggs. It is difficult to assess success rates for intrauterine insemination (IUI) because success depends upon the cause of infertility and whether fertility drugs are used to stimulate egg production. Therefore, the doctor will advise on the success rate depending on the couple’s individual history and circumstances.


In vitro fertilization (IVF): IVF may be considered if there are serious causes for infertility such as completely blocked tubes or extremely poor sperm quality. Unexplained infertility may sometimes be treated via IVF too. IVF involves a few steps. First, fertility drugs are used to help the woman’s ovaries to produce eggs. Next, a minor procedure is performed to remove the eggs from the woman’s body. Once the eggs are removed, the eggs are fertilised with sperm obtained from the male partner in a lab. If successful, one or more embryos arethen transferred back to the woman’s womb through a thin tube to achieve a pregnancy. IVF treatment success depends on the cause of the infertility as well as the age of the mother. Success rates for IVF are lower with increasing age of the mother. The doctor will advise on success rate depending on the couple’s individual history and circumstances.


My advice to couples planning a baby is to start young and early. Regular sex (2 – 3 x) helps. Therefore, stop being workaholics.Get home early for quality bonding time!