Fertility treatment has been a sensitive topic in our society. It is often conflicting with our ego. However, there are numerous couples that face this problem. Since the matter is hush-hush, they are not able to get quality treatment - facing constant grief, regret, falling into depression and self-hatred.
We need to understand that this is a biological problem and can be treated with proper medical attention. Here are 10 rounded up possible treatments that you can opt for after discussion with your family and doctor.
1. Fertility Drugs
These are the first steps toward a fertility treatment. Their basic function is to increase the release of hormones in one’s body. Fertility drugs boost egg production and induce ovulation, further making the uterus more receptive to the implantation of the embryo. These drgs are useful for both women who do not ovulate regularly and men with low sperm counts.
Fertility drugs are consumed as pills or are injected into the blood. Common fertility drugs include Clomid, Femara and Gonadotropins. Each drug plays a different role depending on the problem being faced by the couple.
2. Artificial Insemination (Intrauterine insemination or IUI)
In this method, specially prepared sperms are injected into the uterus. The doctors use a specialized catheter (i.e. a thin flexible tube) for the same. An IUI method is optimal with couples where the male has low quality sperms. These sperms are not able to reach the egg.
An IUI is also useful where the female body has grown antibodies against the partner’s sperms, has a too acidic or thick cervical mucus to transport the sperm. It is a simple procedure that can take place in a clinic. However, it is expensive as compared to fertility drugs.
3. In Vitro Fertilization (IVF)
This is a comparatively complicated procedure. Here the sperms and eggs are collected, later fertilized in a lab. Next, they are planted in the uterus once the embryos are developed.
An IVF is recommended for women with blocked/damaged fallopian tubes or men with extremely poor sperm quality. The treatment can have mild side effects. Thus, it is advised to have in-depth discussion with your doctor before going for an IVF. Further, an IVF methods costs an average from one to two lakhs.
4. Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI)
A single healthy sperm is collected from the male’s semen. Next, in a lab, it is the injected directly into the cytoplasm of the egg with the help of a microscopic needle. This increases the chances of fertilization. The same is kept under observation. If fertilized, it is placed into the female’s uterus.
An ICSI is recommended to couples where the man has extremely low count or poor quality sperms. The procedure has statistically thirty-five percent chances of success. However, the drugs used during the procedure might have mild side effects.
5. Laparoscopy (Keyhole Surgery)
A small incision is made to inspect the pelvic organs with the help of a laparoscope. Cysts, which have blocking and damaging the fallopian tube, can be removed. Thus, this increases the chances of conception. It is popularly used to treat female infertility.
Sometimes additional blood flow from varicoceles (veins of the testicles) can raise the temperature of the testes and make the sperm production dysfunctional. With Varicocelectomy, surgical treatment is done by cutting the veins and reducing the blood flow. This improves the sperm count and, thus, increasing the chances of conception.
7. Donor Sperm
Here the sperm from another male outside the family is used to fertilize the egg. This is extremely useful for couples facing male-factor infertility or where the father has a genetic disorder and they do not wish to pass on to their children.
Today, couples can scan through multitude of donors and choose their fit. It is an economical alternative as compared to ICSI, IVF or IUI.
8. Donor Eggs
Here the eggs are obtained from another female. They are fertilized using the partner-male’s sperm. The fertilized embryos are next transferred to the uterus. This method is advised to females who have poor egg quality or damaged ovaries. It is also opted by females who do not wish to pass on a genetic disorders to their children. It is also efficient for older women.
9. Donor Embryos
If couples who undergo IVF, get pregnant and do not require the embryos - they may donate it to another couple. These embryos are then transplanted into the uterus. It is difficult to find couples who may donate embryos. However, it is one of the only options for couples where both the man as well as female are infertile.
It is recommended to couples where the female is infertile or has a diseases and cannot get pregnant. Surrogacy is also advised to couple where both the partners are infertile. A surrogate mother gets pregnant and gives birth to the child. The embryo is developed from a partner’s egg and sperm or from a donor embryo.
Hope the above gives you an insight to the possible options to tackle infertility. However, consult your doctor before taking any step!