Infertility Investigations

Infertility investigations at your IPSA clinic


Diagnosing a true cause of infertility has less importance today than it did a few years ago. At your IPSA clinic, the current tests are as much prognostic (to predict the likely course of your infertility) in nature as they are diagnostic (to determine the cause of your infertility). However, an investigation of your infertility is still necessary. At IPSA, your fertility physician will determine if the infertility issue stems from the male or female, and the duration of the condition. Your IPSA consultation will involve in-depth history-taking combined with a semen analysis test. Your IPSA physician understands the need for privacy and confidentiality, and will create a conducive atmosphere in which these tests and discussions can take place. Typically, your IPSA fertility specialist will ask you how long you have been attempting to conceive, about the regularity of your menstrual cycle, and about any fluctuations you may have had in your weight. Your age is an important indicator, not only of your fertility status, but also in terms of the likely outcome following treatment.

Further fertility tests

If the male partner’s sperm has an adequate sperm count and adequate motility, and your IPSA physician assumes the cause of infertility to lie with the female, further invasive testing is rarely necessary. These are some of the tests that may be suggested for you during your IPSA fertility consultation:

  • Keyhole laparoscopy allows for the visualisation and/or treatment of your uterus and reproductive tubes. However, if IVF is the most probable treatment option then laparoscopy is rarely helpful.
  • An IPSA fertility practitioner will carry out a pelvic examination on the female partner.
  • An ultrasound scan (this is to determine if ovarian cysts are present) will be given.
  • Blood tests are required to measure the female hormone levels. Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) levels, for example, indicate your ovarian function, while anti-mullerian hormone (AMH) levels are indicative of your ovarian reserve. These tests also help your IPSA consultant to decide on the most appropriate fertility treatment and the likelihood of treatment success.
  • A chlamydia-screening test is sometimes useful in your IPSA physician determining the possibility of pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) or damaged fallopian tubes. This may then mean that diagnostic laparoscopy is required (under a general anaesthetic).
  • If you have a higher than normal level of (male) androgen hormones, it can be suggestive of PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome).


Should I seek help from my IPSA clinic?

If you can answer yes to any of the questions below, it does not necessarily mean that you have fertility issues, but it may save you time and worry by having yourself checked out by your IPSA fertility consultant at a specialist IPSA fertility clinic:

  • Are you and/or your partner worried that you have not yet been able to conceive?
  • Have you, without success, been trying to get pregnant for more than a year?
  • Do you suffer from irregular periods? (Does your cycle vary in length: is it less than 24 days or more than 35 days?)
  • Do you have painful periods?
  • Have you and/or your partner been involved in a previous relationship where you tried to conceive without success?
  • Has your partner had any testicular injury in his past?
  • Has your partner ever had testicular surgery?
  • Has your partner ever had mumps?
  • Have you undergone any form of major abdominal surgery?
  • Have you ever had an ectopic pregnancy?
  • Have you ever had PID or Chlamydia?
  • Are you over 35?
  • Have you had any milk discharge from your breasts?
  • Do you have Cushing’s disease, diabetes, or a thyroid disorder?
  • Are you overweight/underweight?
  • Are you and your partner not able to make love regularly?
  • Does your partner have difficulty when making love?
  • Does your partner have any problems ejaculating?



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