Unexplained infertility is the failure to determine a cause of infertility after a thorough evaluation of both the male and female partner. Most reported statistics show that anywhere from 10-20% of infertility is unexplained. We understand that for many women, this is a very frustrating diagnosis. However, once again the good news is that with current advancements in the treatment of fertility, this diagnosis will not preclude your ability to start a family.
What is Standard Infertility Testing?
One of the big problems in trying to figure out what percentage of infertility is unexplained is that not all fertility clinics do the same testing before giving patients a diagnosis of unexplained infertility. At Fertility Care, we often see patients that may have already had previous fertility treatments at other fertility centers and come to us with a diagnosis of unexplained infertility, and in some cases, no diagnosis at all. These patients have rarely had a thorough set of diagnostic tests, even though the majority of these patients have already been through various treatments.
Dr. Zoneraich and Dr. Larsen believe that it is critically important to run all appropriate diagnostic tests and determine a diagnosis before starting treatment. For the woman, these tests usually include a detailed medical, menstrual, and reproductive history, a physical and ultrasound examination, blood hormone evaluation, assessment of tubal patency and congenital anomalies with HSG (hysterosalpingogram), and assessment of the uterine cavity for polyps, fibroids, or scar tissue with either a sonohysterograms or office hysteroscopy. For the male, diagnostic testing includes a detailed history, semen analysis, and basic blood testing for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and blood type if not known. On occasion, moretesting may require additional hormonal or genetic blood tests and a referral to a urologist for a full physical examination. For a detailed explanation of the diagnostic testing at Fertility Care, please click here to read our section on Diagnostic Testing for Infertility.
What is the Treatment for Unexplained Infertility?
If you have been trying to get pregnant and are ultimately diagnosed with unexplained infertility, there are many options available for you. Treatment plans will be based on your specific needs and diagnostic testing results, and may range from ovulation induction with or without artificial insemination or IUI (intrauterine insemination) to IVF (in vitro fertilization) or donor egg IVF.