How Do I Get
Tested for Female Infertility?
the cause(s) of infertility, there are five basic steps, each of which
consists of a number of tests:
assessment is commonly used by reproductive endocrinologists, yet there
is great variability in infertility
of ovulatory functioning to determine whether the woman is ovulating on
a regular basis, whether the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle is functioning
properly, and whether the timing of ovulation could be assessed.
Tests of ovulation may include basal body temperature monitoring (which
can indicate after the fact that a woman has ovulated), ultrasound testing
(which detects the number, size, and shape of the egg follicles, follows
the growth of follicles, and identifies whether follicles have collapsed,
indicating that ovulation has occurred), and LH2 surge monitoring (which
predicts when ovulation will occur). Luteal phase testing is conducted
to assess whether the uterus prepares itself properly to receive and carry
a fertilized egg, and may include blood tests to determine hormone levels
or an endometrial biopsy to observe the development of the uterine lining.
A semen analysis,
which will first evaluate the quantity, motility, and shape of sperm.
If initial analysis indicates a low sperm count, abnormal sperm shapes,
or low sperm motility, additional analysis may be performed, including
penetration tests or the hemizona test. The hemizona assay test determines
whether sperm binding to the zona membrane of the egg is normal while the
hamster penetration test, or sperm penetration test, uses hamster eggs
to measure the ability of human sperm to fertilize.
functioning, using the post-coital test to assess if there is a problem
in the interaction between a woman's cervical mucus and her partner's sperm.
A post-coital test necessitates the couple to have intercourse before the
woman visits the physicianís office to examine her cervical mucus.
the woman's reproductive tract and reproductive organs through different
means of imaging. An HSG, for example, is a radiologic study in which
dye visible by fluoroscopy is injected into the uterine cavity to determine
the shape of the uterus and the potency of the fallopian tubes.
pelvic environment with laparoscopy, a surgical procedure in which the
inner organs are viewed through an instrument resembling a telescope that
is inserted through the abdominal wall.
as demonstrated by Glastein et al in a 1996 survey of U.S. board-certified
reproductive endocrinologists. The
397 practitioners who responded ordered a semen analysis (99.9% of providers),
an assessment of ovulation
HSG (96.0%), a laparoscopy (89.0%), and a post-coital test (79.0%).
There was less agreement on procedures
such as hormonal
testing, hysteroscopy, and pelvic ultrasound.
] [ Previous ] [ Next