Fertility Treatments for Females

Once a woman is diagnosed with infertility, the overall likelihood for successful treatment is 50%.1

Whether a treatment is successful depends on:

  • The underlying cause of the problem
  • The woman's age
  • Her history of previous pregnancies
  • How long she has had infertility issues
  • The presence or absence of male factor infertility

Fertility treatments are most likely to benefit women whose infertility is due to problems with ovulation. Treatment with medications is least likely to benefit infertility caused by damage to the fallopian tubes or severe endometriosis, although in vitro fertilization can help women with these conditions to conceive.1

The first step of treating infertility in many cases is to treat the underlying cause of infertility. For example, in cases where thyroid disease causes hormone imbalances, medication for thyroid disease may be able to restore fertility.

Citations

  1. Jose-Miller, A. B., Boyden, J. W., & Frey, K. A. (2007). Infertility. American Family Physician, 75, 849–856.
  2. American Society for Reproductive Medicine. (2014). Medications for inducing ovulation: A guide for patients. Retrieved May 31, 2016, from http://www.asrm.org/uploadedFiles/ASRM_Content/Resources/
    Patient_Resources/Fact_Sheets_and_Info_Booklets/ovulation_drugs.pdf (PDF - 359 KB)  
  3. Diamond, M. P., Legro, R. S., Coutifaris, C., Alvero, R., Robinson, R. D., Casson, P., et al. (2015). Letrozole, gonadotropin, or clomiphene for unexplained infertility. New England Journal of Medicine, 373(13), 1230–1240. Retrieved October 24, 2016, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26398071
  4. NICHD. (2015, September 23). Standard treatment better than proposed alternative for unexplained infertility. Retrieved December 20, 2016, from https://www.nichd.nih.gov/news/releases/Pages/092315-treatment-infertility.aspx
  5. NICHD. (2014, July 9). New treatment increases pregnancy rate for women with infertility disorder. Retrieved December 27, 2016, from https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases
    /new-treatment-increases-pregnancy-rate-women-infertility-disorder
  6. American Pregnancy Association. (2015). Ectopic pregnancy. Retrieved May 31, 2016, from http://www.americanpregnancy.org/pregnancycomplications/ectopicpregnancy.html 

How common is infertility?

What are some causes of infertility?

What is fertility preservation?

When should I consult a health care provider?

How is infertility diagnosed?

What infertility treatments are available?

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