How to Prepare for Your First Infertility Appointment

Fertility

Wanting to get pregnant and not being able to is more than frustrating. It can be devastating to have multiple negative pregnancy tests and your menstrual cycle beginning like clockwork each month. If you’re under the age of 35, healthy, and have been trying to conceive for six months or more, you should consider speaking to an infertility specialist. If you’re over the age of 35, your chances of conception will be lower, but that doesn’t mean it’ll be impossible. Preparing for your appointment can be stressful, especially if you don’t know what to expect. You must go there prepared and be able to answer the questions they have for you and your partner for a proper diagnosis.

Write Down Any Questions You Have

Almost everyone has moments in their life when they wished they had written down questions ahead of time but didn’t and forgot to ask certain ones. Make a list ahead of time and remember to bring it to your appointment and don’t be afraid of having questions that might seem silly. This appointment is important, so be willing to ask questions to gain a better understanding of what will happen during and after the appointment. Some things you might want to ask include what tests they’ll do to determine the diagnoses and the best treatment options.

Compile Important Health Information

You should start by getting copies of your medical records because the specialist will want to see them. It’s also helpful to have your family’s medical history, if you don’t know it, try to find out from someone before your appointment. You’ll need to answer detailed questions about your menstrual cycle, including when you first started menstruating, how long your cycle is, and when your last period started. Have a list of current medications, vitamins, and supplements you take daily to be able to provide it to your doctor. Make sure you provide any medical conditions you and your partner have, if you’ve had many miscarriages before, and if you’ve ever seen a specialist before for infertility. The specialist is going to want to know how you’ve been trying to conceive, how often, and for how long. If you’ve been using a fertility calendar, be sure to bring that in as well.

The Examinations

You and your partner will undergo a variety of tests including a blood test, semen analysis, and a physical exam. Women will have a pelvic examination to look for various sexually transmitted diseases or infections that could be causing infertility. Some other testing methods that could be used are BBT charting, which is when you chart your basal body temperature to check for ovulation, a postcoital test, transvaginal ultrasound exam, and a laparoscopy. Your doctor will go over the types of testing they think would be best for you.

The Diagnosis

Your diagnosis might not be something you want to hear, but you do need to be prepared for unsatisfactory results. Don’t hesitate to ask as many questions as necessary to fully understand the diagnosis. Even when you leave your appointment, be willing to spend time researching your diagnosis and treatment options on your own and get a second opinion if necessary. The most important thing to remember is don’t give up hope.

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