My partner and I have been trying to have a baby for nearly 12 months but nothing has happened. Should I be concerned?
While age, weight, nutrition, lifestyle and many other reversible factors can affect your fertility, generally a coupe is deemed to be infertile if they have been trying to conceive for more than 12 months without success. Sometimes this resolves itself, but usually some intervention is required.
I would suggest you and your partner both have a fertility check-up and consider a preconception care program to enhance your chances. Sometimes nature simply doesn’t take it’s course and that’s when you may consider other options like IVF.
Don’t feel like you are the only couple going through fertility problems though, because it’s estimated around 15-20% of Australian couples have difficulty conceiving.
I’ve heard that mobile phones may affect my guys fertility, is this true?
The debate continues on this subject and researchers have produced conflicting results regarding the effects of electromagnetism on sperm health. Until a definitive answer is found, I’d play it safe and suggest both men and women keep mobile phones out of their hip or back pockets.
My gynaecologist thinks I may be allergic to my partners sperm. What does this mean?
While quite rare sometimes a woman can have a reaction to her partners sperm. Symptoms may involve an internal burning sensation after sex, plus redness or swelling where the semen has come in contact with your external skin. In really severe cases hives, itching and difficulty breathing may also occur.
You can still become pregnant if sensitive to your man’s sperm, although in severe cases artificial insemination or IVF is used so that the sperm can be washed free of the reactive proteins prior to use.
I wasn’t immunized as a child and I’m worried this might affect my ability to become pregnant. What should I do?
In most cases we suggest you are immunized before embarking on a mission to fall pregnant. While it is rare these days that chickenpox, mumps or measles are contracted in adult life it can happen. If you contract one of these illnesses while pregnant they can result in blindness, deafness, mental retardation and other serious health problems for your baby.
Meanwhile, in post-pubescent men, mumps can cause sterility. When the risks are so devastating, why would you risk not being immunized.
I want my partner to have a full fertility work up, but he wants to know what it will involve before he goes.
- Fertility history
- Physical exam
- Semen analysis
- Post ejaculatory urine sample
- Blood tests
- Genetic testing
My partner recently had a semen analysis test, what will it reveal?
A semen analysis will provide the following information;
- Amount of semen produced (volume)
- Number of sperm per milliliter of semen (concentration)
- Total number of sperm in the sample (count)
- Percentage of moving sperm (motility)
- Shape of sperm (morphology)
It’s a good idea for both partners to be present for the results, so that each understands what significance the test results may have on achieving pregnancy.