For couples who have been trying to conceive without success, making the decision to go see a fertility specialist can be both frightening and empowering at the same time. While you and your partner may be afraid of what you may find out, at least you’ll have some answers as to why you’re having trouble conceiving, right? Well, not always. For around 20% of couples who undergo fertility testing, there are no clear answers.

But what exactly is unexplained infertility? And what options are available to you if you’re part of that twenty percent? Here, the fertility experts at UNC Fertility clinic in Raleigh, North Carolina discuss unexplained infertility and the options available to you.

What is unexplained infertility?

For couples who are having trouble trying to conceive, the first step is a consultation with a fertility specialist. At this consultation, the specialist will order a full fertility workup, to determine that:

  • The fallopian tubes are open and healthy
  • You have a good ovarian reserve
  • The uterine cavity has no issues impeding implantation of the embryo
  • Your partner’s semen analysis is normal

If after conducting the full workup, it is determined that there are no issues that would prevent you from achieving and carrying a pregnancy, your fertility doctor may give you a diagnosis of unexplained infertility. While there is a reason that you and your partner are unable to conceive, the unexplained infertility diagnosis just means there is no current way to evaluate what that is.

What are your options if you have unexplained infertility?

For couples with unexplained infertility, the first steps are less invasive options. These include fertility medications and intrauterine inseminations (IUIs). For many couples with unexplained infertility, these interventions are enough to successfully achieve a pregnancy. If after trying both fertility medications and IUIs you and your partner are still unable to achieve a pregnancy, the next step would be In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) – a process in which the egg and sperm are combined in a laboratory to make an embryo, with the healthy embryo(s) transferred into the woman’s uterus.

Luckily, IVF is very successful at helping women achieve a pregnancy. But even if IVF is initially unsuccessful, it can reveal subtler fertility issues – such as issues with egg or sperm quality which can keep an embryo from developing normally. If egg or sperm quality is the cause of the infertility, you and your partner can then evaluate if using donor eggs or sperm would be an option for you.

An unexplained infertility diagnosis can be frustrating for a couple who have been struggling with why they’ve been unsuccessful in achieving a pregnancy. Luckily, the fertility specialists at UNC Fertility clinic in Raleigh, North Carolina are experienced at helping couples with unexplained infertility build the family of their dreams. To schedule a consultation with one of our fertility doctors, contact us today at 919-908-0000.