Getting Help with Infertility
During National Infertility Awareness Week, we want to remind those of you in our Clinic Sofia community who may be struggling with getting pregnant that you are not alone.
About 1 in 8 couples struggle with infertility yet so many are uncomfortable speaking up and seeking help. At Clinic Sofia, we see a lot of couples having difficulty getting pregnant based on a wide range of factors.
“We encourage couples to speak up and talk to us about their concerns so we can help identify factors that may be preventing them from conceiving,” said Dr. David Clay. “Thankfully, there are so many options available today, including many we can initiate right here in our offices, so we want couples to come forward and feel comfortable seeking help.”
Factors affecting fertility
Dr. Clay says it is important to note that infertility is not just a women’s issue. Men can have issues with sperm concentration, motility and shape. Other medical issues can also contribute to male infertility.
For women, it is true that age can affect fertility, but other factors may include smoking, excess weight or being underweight, alcohol use and stress that’s severe enough to impact a woman’s period. A physician can help you take a careful look at all of the issues surrounding infertility.
At Clinic Sofia, we like to see patients before they are considering getting pregnant. If couples are concerned about fertility, there are some tests that can be done in the office such as blood tests, urine analysis and imaging tests using ultrasounds.
What about the cost?
The cost for treatment is hard to pin down since there is such a broad range of options and it really comes down to the patient’s insurance coverage. At Clinic Sofia, we work with our patients to outline a plan of action that they can take to their insurance provider to determine what will be covered.
Dr. Clay says that patients may be surprised that there are a number of options that are covered by insurance and that can even be done right at your OB GYN office. We start by recommending the least invasive methods, such as fertility medication. Other treatment options may include medication, insemination, surgery or assisted reproductive technologies. Each method has varying risks and rates of success.
“One of the reasons National Infertility Awareness Week is so important is that we want patients to feel empowered to speak up to get help and also to talk to their employers or insurance providers to ask for coverage,” said Dr. Clay. “We know dealing with infertility can be costly and challenging, but Clinic Sofia is here to offer information, resources and support.