Common Mistakes Gynecologists and General Doctors Make When Treating Infertile Couples

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Finding the right doctor can make a world of a difference to your fertility treatment, which is why spending time researching the best fertility doctor in the best clinic is vitally important. Unfortunately, many patients settle on using doctors who lack any special expertise to treat their fertility issues.

Finding the right doctor can make a world of a difference to your fertility treatment, which is why spending time researching the best fertility doctor in the best clinic is vitally important. Unfortunately, many patients settle on using doctors who lack any special expertise to treat their fertility issues. Most gynecologists can provide the basic infertility workup and testing, but most do not have the proper credentials to provide more advanced care that an infertile couple needs.. Infertility can be a complex problem and to get the proper care without wasting precious time and valuable money it is encouraged to seek the help of advanced trained specialists.

According to Dr. Randy Morris, board certified reproductive endocrinologist and Medical Director of IVF1 in Chicago, "Make sure that the fertility doctor that you are seeing is a Board Certified Reproductive Endocrinologist. Anyone can put a shingle on their office which says "fertility specialist", yet they may not have had any special training. A physician that is board certified in reproductive endocrinology has had 3 years of specific training and must demonstrate proficiency by passing examinations and meeting strict requirements for ongoing medical education and testing.

Dr. Morris has listed below some common mistakes that he has seen throughout the years made by doctors when they have tried to treat infertile couples. This information should be used to insure time and money does not go to waste when treating infertility.

  •      Not getting a semen analysis right away. It is estimated that 20-30 percent of infertility cases are due to the male factor.
  •      Over-diagnosing an ovulation, a condition in which the ovary does not release a ripened egg each month as part of a woman's normal cycle. Many doctors will diagnose an ovulation by using a blood test for a hormone called progesterone. Progesterone is only elevated in women after they have ovulated. An elevated level of progesterone that is consistent with ovulation is anything over 2.5 or 3.0. However, many doctors will mistakenly tell a woman she has not ovulated if her progesterone level is less than 10. "This is a very common mistake that results in women being misdiagnosed, having unnecessary tests performed, and being treated incorrectly," says Morris.
  •      Many doctors order blood work at the wrong time of a woman's cycle. Hormone levels in women change according to the time of the menstrual cycle. Every test needs to be timed precisely. Failure to recognize this fact results in hormone testing being performed with un-interpretable results. This causes delays and incorrect treatment to be given.
  •      Some doctors may not be up to date with the latest in vitro fertilization tests, procedures, technologies and medications. For example, the post coital test looks for sperm in a woman's cervix after a couple has had intercourse. In the past, it was believed that failure to find moving sperm could be a sign of a woman "killing off" her partners' sperm. However, several rigorously performed studies have shown that the test is worthless. Despite the fact that this has been well known for decades, some doctors still use the test today.
  •      Spending too much time on one ivf procedure. For example, a commonly used fertility medication is Clomid. The vast majority of women who will conceive taking clomid will do so within the first four to five months of use. However, some doctors will keep patients on Clomid for many months and even years. Besides being a poor treatment after the first few months, long-term treatment with this medication is potentially harmful and the manufacturer says that it should not be used for more than 6 cycles.
  •      Failure to be more aggressive with older patients (age 37 and above). As women age, their fertility decreases. It is important to be more aggressive in the treatment of these women. Treatments should be considered sooner and the type of treatments should be more aggressive than for younger women.

Dr. Randy Morris is a board certified reproductive endocrinologist and Medical Director of IVF1 in Chicago.

For more information or to set-up an interview with Dr. Randy Morris, contact Jaime Alyn PR at 212-213-2003 or jaime(at)jaimealynpr.com .

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Jaime Alyn
IVF1
212-213-2003
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