If a year or 6 months have passed already and pregnancy has not been achieved, you may be considering going to an assisted reproduction clinic, but… what do you know about the process?

When starting to look for pregnancy, many couples believe that it will be a quick process. We have always been told how easy it is to get pregnant if the necessary precautions are not taken, so it is assumed that pregnancy can happen in the blink of an eye.

However, many couples can find this journey very challenging. Even seemingly healthy couples who exercise daily and eat a healthy diet may encounter fertility issues when the time comes.

Therefore, if after a year of frequent and unprotected sexual intercourse, pregnancy is not achieved (6 months when there is a risk of infertility or the woman is over 35 years old), it is recommended to see a fertility specialist.

Ideally, when you decide the time to become pregnant has arrived, you should make an appointment with your gynecologist for a check-up and discuss your maternal desires with them. The information is essential, allowing you to start from a base.

According to the SEF ( The Spanish Fertility Society), around 85% of couples would be pregnant after one year of frequent and unprotected sexual intercourse.

But what if a year or six months have passed and pregnancy has not arrived? Maybe you are considering going to a fertility clinic, but, What do you know about that fertility journey?

First, you should know that infertility is not only a problem that affects the woman; In heterosexual couples, both partners can contribute to the problem. Therefore, when you go to a fertility clinic, the first step is to do a fertility study of the couple.

8 important things you should know if you are considering assisted reproduction treatment.

If the fertility workup indicates that the best or only option to achieve a healthy pregnancy is through assisted reproductive techniques, here are some things you should know before starting any treatment:

  • Medical tests may continue throughout the entire journey. 

It’s essential to undergo a thorough fertility workup before starting any treatment. However, new tests may have to be evaluated along the process. You should be prepared for this and keep in mind that this journey may be longer than expected.

  • The choice of the best treatment should be made between the patient and the medical team. 

Your fertility specialist will discuss the different assisted reproductive techniques, including their risks and benefits. You should be able to ask any questions you have and make an informed decision with your medical team. Some important questions are about the success rates of the different treatments at the clinic, what are the risks of the possible treatments, what suggestions or lifestyle changes you should implement, what financing options the clinic offers, etc.

  • Medication is essential in almost all assisted reproduction treatments. 

If you go through invitro fertilization treatment, you will need to take medication to stimulate the growth of multiple eggs, which will be collected and fertilized in the laboratory.

  • The specialist may recommend certain lifestyle changes.

To improve the success rate of IVF, the specialist may recommend losing weight, quitting smoking, and reducing alcohol consumption. It’s important to follow these recommendations to increase your chances of success.

  • Fertility treatments can be physically and emotionally challenging.

It’s crucial to be prepared and have the support of your partner, family, and/or friends. Professional support may also be necessary during this time.

  • Fertility treatments can be very expensive. 

You should keep in mind that you may need more rounds of IVF, which can mean more expenses for medications, additional tests, and more time. It is important to keep this in mind to avoid adding more pressure to the situation.

  • Frequent visits to the clinic will be necessary.

You will need to visit the clinic regularly for cycle follow-up, medication adjustment, egg retrieval, and embryo transfers.

  • There are some common side effects associated with IVF.

Here are some of the more common side effects associated with IVF:

  • Ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS): Ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome is an exaggerated response to excess hormones. Symptoms can range from mild to severe and may include abdominal pain, bloating, nausea and vomiting, and even shortness of breath.
  • Pain and discomfort: The egg retrieval process may cause some pain and discomfort, as well as swelling and slight bleeding.
  • Mood swings: both the medication and the process itself can cause significant emotional stress and mood swings, especially if the cycle is unsuccessful.
  • Multiple pregnancies: Although decreasing, IVF increases the risk of multiple pregnancies, which can lead to health complications for both the mother and the babies.
  • Ectopic pregnancy: IVF slightly increases the risk of ectopic pregnancy, which occurs when the fertilized egg implants outside the uterus.
  • Ovarian torsion: this is a rare but serious complication that occurs when the ovary twists on itself and cuts off the blood supply.

You should maintain fluid communication with your medical team throughout the entire process and inform them of any symptoms or concerns that arise during treatment.

The medical team can help you manage any side effects and ensure the best possible outcome.

In conclusion, fertility treatments can be an effective solution for couples struggling with infertility. However, it’s important to be aware of the potential challenges and risks associated with the process. By being prepared and informed, you can make an informed decision and increase your chances of success.

If you have any questions after reading this article or once you have started your fertility journey, please contact me, I will be happy to help you!