Work Up & Testing
A routine and comprehensive infertility workup addresses the most universal question that our hopeful parents have, “why are we not getting pregnant?” or “why can’t we stay pregnant?”
On your first visit, we’re going to get to know you, your health history, goals, and your expectations of all of us here at Conceptions. We’re also going to do some clinical homework and bloodwork to see what’s going on with your endogenous hormone levels. Some of the many hormones we’ll be looking at to gauge your fertility include FSH, AMH, and Estrogen. We’ll also perform an ultrasound examination to make sure the uterine environment is ready to support a pregnancy. Everything matters when you're trying to get pregnant, we understand.
What to Expect: Women
You’re not alone. All across Denver and Colorado women just like you need a little help to get pregnant and have a family. Here’s what you can expect on your first consultation and workup:
Health History Review – We’re going to talk about you during your new patient consultation, a lot! But having your records prior to a consultation can help us find the clues needed and reduce the overall time to treatment.
Bloodwork – As a new patient you can expect to do some bloodwork as part of your workup. Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH), Anti Mullerian Hormone (AMH), and Estrogen (E2) are the key indicators of egg quantity and quality the building blocks of a successful diagnosis and treatment.
Transvaginal Ultrasound (TVU) – We’ll perform a quick, in-office TVU to make sure the uterine environment is healthy and gain insight into your current egg quantity.
Hysterosalpingogram (HSG) – For some, your physician may perform a hysterosalpingogram or x-ray procedure used to view the inside of the uterus and fallopian tubes. It is often used to see if the fallopian tubes are partly or fully blocked. It can also show if the uterus is a normal size and shape.
What to Expect: Men
While many people think fertility issues are largely a female issue, they’re not. In fact, the causes of infertility are equally split between men and women.
However, for men, the fertility testing process is a little more straightforward. For most males, sperm quality, and quantity are the biggest drivers of infertility.
Semen Analysis (SA) – Men will be required to provide a sample so we can check sperm count or the number of sperm. In general, a count of 15 million sperm per milliliter, or 39 million sperm per ejaculate, is considered on the low side and the help of a fertility specialist may be needed. A low sperm count is often referred to as oligospermia.
An SA will also check for whether they are of normal shape (morphology), and movement (motility).
Taking the First Step
Congratulations you did the hardest part and took the first step by speaking with a fertility specialist here at Conceptions! While most fertility workups can be completed within 30-days, sometimes starting treatment may require an additional test or a procedure.
While you’re waiting to start a treatment cycle, you should consider a few things that can help prepare your body and mind for care.
- Women should take a prenatal vitamin with folic acid. Men are encouraged to take a daily multivitamin. Additional supplements may be recommended by your physician.
- Avoid any type of drug or marijuana use, smoking, or tobacco products. Limit alcohol intake.
- Regular, moderate exercise is encouraged.
- Incorporate a well-balanced diet, limiting processed foods.
- Consider limiting travel especially as COVID-19 remains a threat. Also, keep in mind areas of Zika transmission as the CDC continues to recommend those attempting pregnancy avoid travel to these destinations.