If you want to get pregnant but it hasn’t happened on its own, you’ve probably spoken in depth with your OB/GYN about your fertility. Infertility affects between 20% and 25% of heterosexual women of reproductive age and is often directly linked to some underlying condition.
While you may struggle as you try for a pregnancy, the good news is that there are plenty of treatment options to increase your fertility.
With guidance from a trusted OB/GYN, you can access options like in vitro fertilization, fertility medications, and other treatments to increase your chances of getting pregnant.
Our expert OB/GYNs at The Association for Women’s Health Care in Chicago and Northbrook, Illinois, explore every possibility when it comes to your infertility and can direct you to the right course of treatment after they determine any underlying cause.
Among the possible causes are these five top conditions that lower your chances of getting pregnant:
As one of the leading causes of infertility for women, PCOS creates a hormone imbalance that may prevent your ovaries from releasing a viable egg each month. Without this process, which is called ovulation, you can’t get pregnant.
Fortunately, PCOS infertility is highly treatable. With the right care, many women with this condition can still get pregnant.
As you well know, your uterus sheds its lining once a month, and that’s when you have your period. If you have endometriosis, that same tissue lining the inside of your uterus grows elsewhere.
It shows up on various organs and tissues in your pelvis and abdomen, and it goes through the same process of becoming inflamed and then shedding, but it has nowhere to go.
Endometriosis can affect your fertility in a few different ways. Often, the extra tissue growth causes scarring and adhesions on your organs, which can cause blockages that prevent fertilization.
If a scar blocks your fallopian tube, for example, a healthy egg cannot meet up with sperm. Endometriosis can also prevent a fertilized egg from implanting in your uterus.
Polyps and fibroids are two common types of growth that can appear on your uterus. While they’re benign and mostly harmless, they can prevent the implantation of a fertilized egg. Similar to endometriosis, they can also cause blockages in the fallopian tubes that also prevent pregnancy.
Menopause is the time in your life when your menstrual cycles come to an end. That means no periods and no ovulation. Most women reach menopause in their mid-40s or so, but some reach menopause much earlier and are then puzzled when they cannot get pregnant.
If you stop getting periods for a full 12 consecutive months before you turn 40, you might be in premature menopause. Early menopause is menopause that happens before 45.
Many types of cancer, not just the reproductive varieties, can lead to problems getting pregnant. Not only that, but common treatments for cancer such as chemotherapy and radiation can affect your fertility too. These treatments can prevent ovulation.
When you have trouble getting pregnant, our team at The Association for Women’s Health Care. is available to help. Call either of our two offices in the greater Chicago area or schedule an appointment online today to learn more about fertility care.