What to expect at a Fertility Clinic, Part 1 – Tests & Screening

fertility clinic tests

If you and your partner decide to attend a Fertility Clinic as part of your efforts to conceive, you will probably have many questions about the pathway ahead.

In the following series of articles, we at Pillar Healthcare will tell you what you can expect. We begin with what will be the first step at the clinic – a series of tests and screenings for both the female and male partner.

These procedures are necessary for your fertility specialists to recommend the best course of action for you. Factors such as hormone levels in the female partner, and sperm count and motility in the male, play a role in determining what drug therapy may be first recommended, and which Assisted Reproductive Technique (ART) may be best – e.g. IVF, ICSI, GIFT, etc.

Taking pre-Conceive before presenting for tests, and in conjunction with attending your Fertility Clinic appointments, can help raise your key fertility parameters so that you have a greater chance of success with IVF or another ART. Its clinically-studied unique combination of 31 vitamins, minerals and other nutrients brings benefits to both women and men.

pre-Conceive brings specific benefits regarding some of the tests that will be conducted at the Fertility Clinic. These tests include:

Fertility Clinic tests for women

  • A test to determine your level of Anti-Müllerian Hormone (AMH) – which indicates the depth of your ovarian reserve.
  • A test to measure your Fertility Hormone Profile. This is normally taken between days two and four of your cycle. It determines whether or not there is any hormonal imbalance.
  • Blood tests to find out if you are ovulating.
  • An ultrasound scan to look at your uterus and ovaries.
  • Follicle tracking – a series of ultrasound scans to follow the development of a follicle to see if an egg is developing.
  • Hysterosalpingogram – an x-ray to check your fallopian tubes.
  • Laparoscopy – an operation in which a dye is injected through your cervix as the pelvis is inspected via a telescope (laparoscope) with a tiny camera attached to check for tubal blockage.
  • Hysteroscopy – a telescope with a camera attached is used to view your uterus to check for conditions such as fibroids or polyps.
  • Hysterosalpingo-contrast sonography (HyCoSy) – a vaginal ultrasound probe is used to check the fallopian tubes for blockages.
  • Occasionally, a tissue sample may be taken from the endomtrrium  lining of your uterus to be analysed.

How pre-Conceive can help

pre-Conceive Clinical Results Women

Results from pre-Conceive Clinical Study, 2014

Fertility Clinic tests for men

  • Semen analysis to determine sperm count, sperm motility, and sperm quality
  • A sperm antibody test to check for protein molecules that may prevent sperm from fertilising an egg
  • A sperm DNA test that examines the quality of paternal DNA

How pre-Conceive can help

pre-Conceive Clinical Results Men

Results from pre-Conceive Clinical Study, 2014

Other screening at a Fertility Clinic

Before processing patient’s sperm, eggs or embryos for treatment and/or storage, a Fertility Clinic must also carry out a number of screening tests to assess the risk of contamination. The clinic will screen patients for:

  • HIV 1 and 2: Anti-HIV – 1, 2
  • Hepatitis B: HBsAg/Anti-HBc
  • Hepatitis C: Anti-HCV-Ab

Testing for HTLV-1, malaria and other conditions may also be performed if a patient’s medical and/or recent travel history indicates they may be at risk.

Patients who donate their eggs, sperm or embryos must also be screened for according to professional body guidelines.

What comes next?

Once tests and screening are carried out, your fertility specialist will recommend what they consider to be the best course of action for you and your partner. This will almost certainly include some drug therapy at first, followed by IVF, ICSI, or another Assisted Reproductive Technique. Continuing to take pre-Conceive during this time will continue to improve your fertility levels and overall health, and therefore continue to improve your chances of ultimate success.

Read more

Part 2- The IVF Process Explained

Part 3- Alternatives to IVF – Other Assisted Reproductive Techniques