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Infertility: Should I Have Treatment?

Finding out that you or a loved one is infertile can be difficult, but the decision of whether or not to use treatment can be even harder. Before deciding, it is important to get all the facts, compare your options and then gauge your feelings. Be sure to allow you and your partner the time you need to make the proper decision.

Get the facts

  • In many cases, infertility treatments have increased the likelihood of pregnancy, but still cannot guarantee that you will have a baby.
  • Treatment can increase your chances of multiple pregnancies, so be sure to consult a doctor about the potential risks involved.
  • It is important to set financial and time limits before you begin infertility treatment. Since the process can be painful, stressful and costly, it is crucial that you and your partner agree upon the amount of money and time you can afford to spend on the process.
  • No cause is found for 10 out of 100 couples that are tested for infertility. Out of these 10 couples, about 3 will get pregnant without treatment, within 3 years and about 5 will get pregnant within around 7 years.

Compare Options – Fertility Treatment

  • Process—Depending on your type of infertility, you can take medicines, undergo surgery, use in vitro fertilization, or try insemination to increase your odds of getting pregnant. Though most infertility treatments won’t require overnight hospital stays, surgery can require a 2-4 day hospital stay and from a 2-day up to a several week recovery.
  • Benefits—The chances of getting pregnant can be increased through the use of infertility treatment
  • Risks and Side Effects—Treatment can increase the likelihood of multiple pregnancies and birth defects, depending on the method used. Certain infertility medicines have side effects and can increase the risk of miscarriage. Risks aside, infertility treatment cannot guarantee pregnancy and is often painful, costly and stressful for all those involved.

Compare Options – No Fertility Treatment

  • Process—Either continue to try and get pregnant on your own by using an ovulation calendar or consider pursuing different parenting options such as adoption, surrogacy or foster parenting.
  • Benefits—You can avoid the common stress, cost and side effects involved with infertility treatments.
  • Risks and Side Effects—You may not be able to conceive without receiving any sort of infertility treatment.

Gauge Your Feelings

  • How important is it to you that you parent a biological child?
  • Are you financially prepared for the costs of treatment?
  • Are you emotionally prepared for the stresses of treatment?
  • Can you accept the fact that even though you receive treatment, you may still not be able to get pregnant?

If you decide to pursue treatment for infertility, know that there are many resources that can assist you and support you in the path that you have chosen. The OB/Gyn physicians at our Women’s Health Center can help get you started, Dr. Todd Schad and Dr. Suzanne Welsch.