The field of infertility continues to undergo significant advances. In the United States, a couple has an approximate 25% chance of conceiving per month, 75% by 6 months, and 90% by one year. That leaves approximately 10 to 15% of couples unsuccessful at conceiving in one year. Recent figures from the National Center for Health Statistics indicate that about 12% of women in the United States aged 15 to 44 had difficulty getting pregnant or carrying a baby to term. One-third of infertility cases are due to female factors, another third are due to male factors and the remaining third are caused by a mixture of male and female factors or by unknown factors.
For couples that have been unsuccessful conceiving, Capital Region Urology conducts urologic evaluations. This will include complete history and physical examination, a detailed fertility questionnaire, hormonal evaluation and semen analysis. The results of this evaluation and any proposed therapy will be discussed with both patient and partner and communicated to the female partner's treating gynecologist.
A range of problems can cause female infertility and require full investigation: ovulatory dysfunction, tubal infertility, endometriosis, or surgical/immunological/hormonal causes. In contrast to female infertility, all causes of male infertility affect only one target organ, the testes. A semen analysis is the primary test used to determine male fertility. Semen analysis results can be normal, mildly, moderately or severely abnormal or may show no semen at all, a condition called azoospermia.
Capital Region Urology physicians will recommend infertility treatments based on test results, how long the couple has been trying to get pregnant, the age of both the man and woman, the overall health of the partners, and the preference of the partners. Treatments may include medication, surgery, sperm harvesting, artificial insemination or assisted reproductive technology. Many times these treatments are combined.