With all the advancements made in technology and the field of medical science, unexplained infertility is still a mystery. More importantly, this infertility is more common than you would think. There are many couples who are unable to conceive a child, yet the reason for their infertility is not determined. With all the diagnosis and tests available these days, there are still some cases of infertility which don’t have any specific reason.
Dr Uday (Indira IVF hospital), explained “Infertility itself is a common occurrence these days, particularly among older couples. On a rough estimate, around 50% of cases are caused by fertility issues in the female, with 40% being caused due to male fertility issues. It can happen that the infertility is caused due to issues with both the partner. For the rest 10% of cases, the doctors don’t have any explanation. Couples with this sort of infertility have a hard time dealing with it since they don’t know the cause of it”.
It is actually surprising that the number of cases where fertility cannot be explained is quite high. With these cases, there is no physical or medical reason at all due to which the couple is possibly failing to conceive. The fact that there is no definite reason should be alarming for infertile couples. It makes it important for them to try and understand the condition better.
Of course, not every case of infertility is unexplained. A male or a female can be diagnosed as infertile only after some specific examinations and routine tests are carried out. However, in certain situations, the reports are completely normal. When there is no medical evidence supporting the cause of the issue, the case actually remains unexplained.
Dr. Shashibala (Gynaecologist & IVF Specialist, Indira IVF, Ranchi), revealed “Unexplained infertility diagnosis is not easy to establish. Fertility doctors will diagnose your infertility as unexplained only after performing a series of checks on both the concerned partners. Doctors reach this conclusion only if they believe that a cause for infertility cannot be established after analyzing all the test results”. They believe that the problem is probably being caused by certain risk factors such as stress, weight issues, environmental toxins, alcohol, drug usage, smoking, caffeine consumption, excessive exercising, etc.
All of these are just the theoretical factors that are known to affect fertility. If nothing else explains your infertility, you should try eliminating these risk factors first. While these factors aren’t necessarily the cause of the diagnosis, limiting them can actually help you in conceiving.
When a couple cannot conceive, they often search around hopelessly looking for answers. In most cases, certain physiological defects in either or both the partners cause infertility. These cases are easy to diagnose and the doctors prescribe a treatment depending on the cause of infertility. However, as is the scenario with other cases, doctors find it difficult to point out the reason why the couple is unable to conceive. This type of infertility is also known as idiopathic infertility.
Dr. Ruhi Srivastava (Gynaecologist & IVF Specialist, Indira IVF, Ranchi), explained, “For diagnosis of any infertility, certain standard tests and procedure are carried out. These tests eliminate all common causes that are known. For instance, laparoscopic surgery may be performed to check for infertility in women. This is done for investigating the pelvic cavity of the woman. Even tests like these might not be enough for the diagnosis. Nowadays, it is even harder with the increasing number of cases of infertility with unexplained causes”.
Among married couples, the occurrence of this condition is more common when the female partner is above 40 years of age. It can also happen when the concerned woman is below 35 years of age, although they are comparatively fewer in number. Hence, it is quite clear that this form of infertility, just like any other infertility, is more common among older women. The unexplained infertility treatment your doctor recommends will also depend on your age.
Through the standard tests, some of the obvious causes of infertility that are diagnosed include low or abnormal sperm count, blocked fallopian tube and ovulation problems. However, there are no tests done for finding molecular problems.
Chances of infertility increase significantly beyond the age of 35. There are obvious reasons behind this. As a woman grows older, she is more likely to have troubles with ovulation. The quantity and quality of eggs released from the ovary are affected because of this. There are hormonal changes as well, which are known to contribute to fertility issues.
Dr Puja Rani (Chief Infertility & IVF Specialist, Indira IVF, Ranchi), explained “Once the diagnosis for infertility is completed, the doctors recommend further tests and procedure based on the diagnosis. If they find a reason behind infertility, they will recommend treatment options to eliminate the causes. They may also carry out further tests based on the initial diagnosis”.
However, when the infertility is diagnosed with an unknown cause, the concerned couple has to undergo three different tests. There are good chances that these tests would actually provide you a hint about your condition.
If you are lucky, these tests will give an indication of a probable cause of your infertility. It is better to undergo thorough testing and tick off all the boxes before coming to a conclusion.
Couples suffering from infertility with unexplained diagnosis should know that there are various reasons behind the condition. They should have an idea about all the probable causes of infertility so that they can get the right treatment. Some possible unexplained infertility causes include:
Dr Mekhla Goyal, (Gynaecologist & IVF Specialist, Indira IVF, Ahmedabad), explained “If you are diagnosed to be infertile and there are no medical or physical causes behind it, there is no need to lose hope. It is indeed possible to resolve the issue and get pregnant with unexplained infertility”.
Sometimes, there isn’t even any need for infertility treatment. With infertility, the time period plays an important role. The chances for the woman to conceive get lower with longer duration of infertility. If the causes are not known, you can continue to try to conceive with your partner. There are chances that you will get pregnant within 3 years of trying. If you have been trying for over 5-6 years, the probability of conceiving naturally is reduced to 10%.
After a certain period of time, it is wise to consider infertility treatment options. Some infertility treatments you can consider include ovarian stimulation through fertility drugs, Clomid plus insemination, injectable gonadotropins, etc. Of course, you also have assisted reproductive technologies available. IVF is one of the most common technologies used. In fact, it is often the preferred treatment option for infertility with unexplained causes. So, all hopes are not lost. You definitely have other options to consider.
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