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Female Fertility Testing

Female Fertility Testing – Hormone Check – Reproductive Imaging – Frisco, TX

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Overview

Fertility testing for women at the Frisco Institute for Reproductive Medicine in Frisco, TX encompasses various blood tests and procedures used to diagnose the underlying causes of female infertility. Women should consider fertility testing if they have been trying to get pregnant for more than a year or have a preexisting condition that my affect their fertility. If the woman is over the age of 35, she should consider testing if she has been trying with her partner for 6 months. Age is a major factor affecting fertility. Initial testing focuses on the most common causes of infertility that can be identified using the least invasive approaches, such as:

  • Discussion of medical records and sexual history
  • Pelvic exam
  • Blood tests to check certain hormones
  • Ovarian reserve testing to assess overall egg quantity
  • Reproductive imaging procedures

During the first visit, our experienced Reproductive Endocrinologists and Infertility Specialists, Dr. Rinku Mehta or Dr. Ali Guerami, will discuss your medical and sexual history. This discussion is vital because a prior case of chlamydia, a sexually transmitted disease, or a simple misunderstanding of timing intercourse could be the only fertility issue. We will also perform a pelvic sonogram to identify possible issues that can affect your fertility. Fertility issues diagnosed during a sonogram can include ovarian cysts or an abnormally shaped uterus. This initial meeting will determine what additional testing is necessary.

Female Testing Available

Fertility testing will search for all relevant causes of infertility. A reproductive specialist will perform a series of tests to diagnose and treat female infertility.

Blood Testing

Blood tests for reproductive hormones are performed at different points in the menstrual cycle. In order for an egg to mature and be released by the ovaries, the proper hormones need to have balanced levels. The blood hormone tests assess these levels.

Ultrasounds

Aside from its use in ovarian reserve testing, an ultrasound or sonogram, is a noninvasive way to view the anatomy of the female reproductive system. Ultrasounds are helpful in diagnosing common fertility problems such as ovarian cysts and uterine fibroids. An ultrasound can be performed transvaginally, within the vagina, or over the top of the abdomen.

Ovarian Reserve Testing

Ovarian reserve testing evaluates the overall number of eggs in a woman’s ovaries and can be accomplished through a blood test and/or through an ultrasound. A blood test on day 3 of the menstrual cycle measures the amount of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and estradiol (E2). Another very accurate hormone test for egg reserve is called the Anti-Mullerian Hormone (AMH). This can be checked at any time during the menstrual cycle and even when a woman is on birth control pills.

Day 3 testing is important because FSH production is increased in all women during the beginning of the menstrual cycle. In older women, or women who have premature ovarian failure, the levels of FSH will be especially high, indicating decreased egg quantity.

An ultrasound can also be used as part of ovarian reserve testing to determine the number of antral (resting) follicles in each ovary. Each follicle contains one egg that can mature and be released during ovulation. The total number of antral follicles in both ovaries is the total antral follicle count (AFC). In general, the higher the AFC, the better the overall egg quantity.

Sonohysterogram

Sonohysterogram uses a transvaginal ultrasound in combination with a saline (salt) solution that fills the uterus to produce a clearer picture of the uterine cavity. The sonohysterogram procedure commonly diagnoses uterine adhesions (scarring) and abnormal growths such as polyps or fibroids.

Hysterosalpingogram

Hysterosalping is a procedure where the doctor uses low radiation X-ray to view the woman’s reproductive organs, specifically the fallopian tubes. The doctor will inject contrasting dye into the uterus and fallopian tubes so that the organs show up clearly on the X-ray. A hysterosalpingogram is helpful in diagnosing a blockage in the fallopian tubes or uterine abnormalities such as incavitary fibroids, polyps, or abnormal shape of the uterus.

Hysteroscopy

Hysteroscopy is a surgical procedure in which a small scope (camera) is inserted into the uterus through the cervix, and is typically used to diagnose and treat uterine fibroids, polyps, or uterine septum.

Laparoscopy

Laparoscopy is a procedure where the doctor inserts a camera and a small surgical instrument into the abdominal cavity through a small incision in the belly button. Laparoscopic surgery is used to treat endometriosis and remove uterine fibroids, ovarian cysts, and/or scar tissue.

Pelvic MRI

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the pelvic area uses a magnetic field and radio waves to take accurate pictures of soft tissue, organs, muscles, and blood vessels, without bones obstructing the view. A pelvic MRI can diagnose infertility, abnormal menstrual bleeding, or pelvic pain.

What to Expect

You should consider fertility testing if you have been actively trying to get pregnant by having unprotected, regular sex with your partner for more than one year. If you are over the age of 35, you should consider fertility testing after 6 months of trying to get pregnant. Women with the following conditions may elect to have fertility testing sooner:

  • Diagnosed or suspected problems with the reproductive organs; uterus, ovaries, or fallopian tubes
  • Irregular menstrual cycle (more than 35 days apart or none at all)
  • Recurrent miscarriages
  • A partner with diagnosed or suspected infertility

Testing Risks

Generally, the risks of fertility testing are very low. Noninvasive procedures such as pelvic exams, blood work, and ultrasounds carry the miniscule chance of infection.

Minimally invasive surgical procedures, such as hysteroscopy and laparoscopy, carry risks associated with surgery such as excessive blood loss, infection, puncture of an organ (uterus, bladder or bowel), or reaction to the anesthesia, which occur in less than 0.5% of cases.

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Compassionate Care & Testing

If you are experiencing infertility, you can find out so much more with reproductive imaging. Our staff will explain the process and any risks associated with the testing equipment. Our experienced doctors at FIRM will only recommend the reproductive imaging techniques that will best diagnose your specific reproductive issue. Schedule your appointment today.

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*Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person. Images may contain models.