Intended parents visit Halo fertility for a myriad of reasons. Perhaps you’re planning for the future and want to check your fertility before trying to get pregnant. Maybe you’ve already been trying for months without success. Or perhaps you’ve struggled to carry a pregnancy to term. Alternatively, you may be seeking help creating a family via third-party egg or sperm donation, or a gestational carrier. While all of these fertility journeys follow different paths, the first step is always a fertility assessment.
So what happens at a fertility assessment with Halo Fertility? Each patient’s appointment may look a little different depending on their unique circumstances. But in general, here’s what you can expect.
We’ll Ask About Your Medical History
The first thing we’ll need to do during your fertility assessment is ask about your medical history. We’ll need to know about any previous medical problems, along with any surgeries. It’s important to be as detailed as possible.
Sometimes, there are conditions that you might not think are relevant to your fertility challenges, but they actually do play a role. For example, thyroid disease, autoimmune disease, and sickle cell anemia may not seem directly related to your fertility, but they do have an impact.
We’ll Also Discuss Lifestyle Factors
In addition to your medical history, we’ll discuss any lifestyle factors that could impact your fertility. These include things like alcohol, tobacco, and drug use, even if it was in the past. Your weight also impacts your fertility. Being either obese or underweight is linked to fertility challenges.
Additionally, your job could play a part in your fertility. If your job requires hard physical labor, it may affect your sperm count, and if you’re exposed to chemicals and pollutants, that can also affect your fertility. So it’s very important that we have the whole picture as we try to determine the source of your fertility challenges.
We’ll Perform a Full Physical Exam
With your physical exam, we’ll look for any structural abnormalities and any other physical problems that could impact your fertility. At Halo Fertility, we specialize in full-body fertility evaluations because we know that your fertility journey is most likely to be successful when your whole body is healthy.
As part of catering to your whole-body health, we’ll recommend tailored supplements and wellness plans. These help your body prepare for the next steps in your fertility journey, whether that’s planning to conceive in the next year, preparing to undergo IVF, or freezing your eggs. The more you can do to support your body, the more successful your fertility treatment is likely to be. And we’re here to support you every step of the way.
What Happens After the Exam?
What happens after the physical exam will depend on the potential problems we have identified. Often, we’ll do some testing the same day to get a better picture of your health and the origin of your fertility challenges. However, exactly which tests we run will be dependent on your unique situation.
As a result, we recommend familiarizing yourself with common signs and causes of infertility ahead of your fertility assessment. It’s good to know the terms ahead of time, so your fertility assessment doesn’t seem like information overload.
There are screening tests that go along with each of the common causes of infertility. Some can be done immediately, so we may perform those tests during your assessment. Others need to be timed to your cycle, so we’ll schedule those at a future date.
Fertility Tests We May Recommend
After your physical exam, we may recommend a number of tests to help us get a clearer picture of your fertility challenges and how we can help. Here are some of the most common tests:
- Hormone Testing: Estrogen, testosterone, pituitary hormones, and even hormones released by your thyroid can all impact your fertility. So we’ll check your hormone levels to see whether they need to be addressed.
- Ovarian Reserve: As you age, your supply of eggs is reduced. So we’ll check your ovarian reserve early in your cycle to get an idea of how many eggs you have available for future ovulation.
- Ovulatory Tests: It’s important to find out whether you are ovulating normally, so we’ll do a simple blood test to check your hormone levels. This helps us determine whether there are any ovulation disorders that could impact your fertility.
- Imaging tests: We may order a variety of imaging tests to help us get a better look at your reproductive organs and how they are functioning. These could include sonograms, special types of X-rays and tests that allow us to look inside your abdomen or uterus with a tiny camera.
- Genetic and DNA Testing: Sometimes infertility has a genetic cause, or there may be problems with the DNA in your sperm. We’ll run tests to see if either of these causes are a factor in your fertility.
- Semen Analysis: A semen analysis is a non-invasive test that simply requires you to provide a semen sample. We’ll test for sperm quantity and quality, how well your sperm move, the volume and pH of your semen, and how quickly your semen liquifies–all of which can affect your fertility.
At the end of your appointment, we’ll make sure you understand and are comfortable with your treatment plan. And we’ll schedule any additional tests we need to run in the future. We’ll also talk about recommendations for lifestyle changes that may help increase your fertility.
Now that you know what happens at a fertility assessment with Halo Fertility, we hope you feel more confident about scheduling your first appointment. And remember, we are always happy to answer any questions. We hope to see you soon!